Perhaps the biggest hole on the roster is the lack of a backup shortstop. Zack Cozart is a solid shortstop, but it's unrealistic to expect him to take the field every day. When he needs a day off, who fills in for him?
Last year's utility man, Cesar Izturis, recently signed a minor league deal with the Houston Astros, via MLB.com's Brian McTaggart. Now, the team has to find a replacement.
On the roster, there isn't a clear candidate.
Veteran Skip Schumaker has played second base and all of the outfield positions. He played a few games at third base in the minors, but he doesn't have any experience at shortstop.
Jack Hannahan may have the most experience at shortstop of any player on the Reds' bench. He has played a grand total of nine games at the position in his seven-year career, including seven games in 2007.
Henry Rodriguez is an interesting option. It's unclear whether or not he will even be in the majors on Opening Day, but he would give the Reds a utility man off the bench. He has played in 58 games at shortstop in his seven seasons in the minors. However, he didn't play a single game at shortstop in 2013.
Rodriguez hit .274/.319/.335 in Triple-A last season, but he has only four hits in 26 at-bats in parts of two seasons in the majors. Letting him play every day in the minors would help him grow as a hitter, but the Reds may not have any better options than the 23-year-old.
Back in December, MLB.com's Mark Sheldon reported that Reds general manager Walt Jocketty was looking for a switch-hitting utility man. Izturis fit that description, but now there are even fewer options.
Rodriguez is a switch-hitter. Free agent Ramon Santiago fits the description as well. If the Reds want a backup who is primarily a shortstop, right-hander and former Red Paul Janish could be an option. Janish isn't a great hitter, but his glove would fit nicely on the days that Cozart needs off.
Cincinnati doesn't have much money to spend, so it may be forced to look for bargains. Rodriguez is already in the system. He would be a solid choice to fill out the roster, but the Reds would still be without a strong option to back up Cozart.