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The Cincinnati Reds are preparing to welcome back their top prospect after his PED suspension

After being suspended for failing a PED test in spring training, Cincinnati Reds top prospect and reliever Noelvi Marte is preparing to return.

The Reds have played 66 games this season, meaning Marte has 14 games left in the major leagues due to his 80-game suspension. The team sent him to Triple-A Louisville to begin his rehabilitation.

Marte’s suspension came as a shock to the baseball world this spring, as he is expected to be one of the young pillars of the Reds’ lineup. Instead, he will miss the first half of the season and will be ineligible for the postseason if the Reds make it there.

The current hope is that Marte can be productive upon his return and help the 32-34 Reds return to the National League playoffs. Time will tell how he will be used by manager David Bell upon his return and how he will be perceived by his teammates.

Marte made his first league debut in 2023. He played in 35 games for the Reds, hitting .316 with three runs scored, 15 RBI and six stolen bases.

Because he didn’t play enough games to fall out of MLB’s top 100 prospects, he enters the year ranked 28th overall in baseball (2nd in the organization).

The following information is taken from part of his prospect profile on MLB.com:

Marte is only 22 years old through the 2024 season. Marte is still a somewhat unpredictable player, but he made progress last season by becoming a more consistent offensive player. The Reds asked him to make better swing decisions once he got to Triple-A, and he showed more skill at making adjustments, which led to his call up to the major leagues. He never struck out much in the minors and continued to draw walks, which will help him improve his ability to utilize his considerable raw power. It’s still mostly on his pull side, but he’s shown he has the smarts to move the ball to all areas.

Marte is largely an above-average runner who can steal a base here and there, but he recorded some elite sprint speeds in his big league debut.

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