Look toward Arizona and the recently completed Arizona Fall League. Carolina manager David Bell managed the Peoria Saguaros, which included seven Reds' prospects, including three of the top five and five of the top 10 in the system.
"They played well," Bell said. "The club has some talent in the system. Let's take a look at the AFL players:
First baseman Yonder Alonso: He's ranked No. 2 in the system by Baseball America. He hit .267 with a .353 on-base percentage with a .393 slugging percentage. He had two home runs and 23 RBI in 86 at-bats after a slow start.
Bell's take: "He's a very mature player. His approach at the plate for a guy without a lot of professional experience is very good. He's young, very young, but watching his approach you'd never know it. The other parts of his game have really improved.
"He's made improvements in all parts of the game. It's been great for him to get the experience out here. He's playing better defense, his baserunning is better. To me, those are the last pieces to getting ready. He's getting closer and closer."
Right-hander Mike Leake: The No. 1 pick this year went 1-2 with a 1.37 ERA in his first taste of pro ball. He struck out 15 and only walked three in 192/3 innings.
Bell's take: "He was really impressive. It's pretty amazing how he handled himself. But for a young kid, he really has a good idea of how to pitch. There are lot of things you can't put your finger on. He changes speeds, arm angles. It's not that he doesn't have good stuff, but the other things stand out so much that nobody talks about his stuff."
Outfielder Chris Heisey: Heisey, rated No. 4 in the system, hit .297 with a .379 on-base and slugged .593.
Bell's take: "He's just a good all-around player. Playing in this league was good for him to get experience against good pitching. He has a good understanding of every part of the game. He has the ability and talent and he's a hard worker.
Right-hander Brad Boxberger: This year's No. 2 pick got roughed up. He was 1-1 with an 11.37 ERA. BA rates him as No. 9 prospect in the organization.
Bell's take: "He's got a very good arm. This was his first professional experience. He had some success. He's in the mid-90s with his fastball.
Shortstop Zack Cozart: He showed more offense than he has, hitting .340 with a .393 on-base. BA rates him No. 10.
Bell's take: "He's solid. Very smart. He's a winning player. He makes everyone around him better. He's good in clutch situations. He has the range to be a big league shortstop, especially with his knowledge of the hitters."
Logan Ondrusek: He was just added to the 40-man. His numbers - 2-1, 13.50 ERA - reflect his early struggles.
Bell's take: "He's got a tremendous arm. He's got a good cut fastball. He can be overpowering."
Sean Watson: He was 0-1 with a 7.71 ERA.
Bell's take: "He's a competitive tough kid. He faced a lot of good competition out here."