Price: Suarez could play multiple positions

Price: Suarez could play multiple positions

ST. LOUIS -- As the Reds' front office makes potential moves that look ahead to 2016, Reds fans also are often looking ahead to next season. And one of the big questions they have is what will the team do at shortstop?

Zack Cozart was enjoying a very nice season until a grisly right knee injury on June 10 required surgery and ended his year. Cozart's replacement, Eugenio Suarez, has been very strong at the plate.

Reds manager Bryan Price was asked if Suarez could play a different position than shortstop, where Cozart stands out as much stronger defensively.

"I think [Suarez] could play a lot of different positions," Price said on Wednesday. "We certainly like him very, very much at shortstop. But I think he could play anywhere in the infield. He could probably go out and play some outfield if we needed him to."

Of course, the Reds currently have established players at other infield spots -- namely Brandon Phillips at second base and Todd Frazier at third base.

Cozart, who turns 30 on Aug. 12, batted .258/.310/.459 with nine home runs and 28 RBIs in 58 games, and was enjoying a strong bounce-back year before his injury. He will be second-year arbitration-eligible this winter after he earned $2.35 million this season.

Cozart's knee injury

Suarez, 24, has been error-prone since coming up from Triple-A Louisville to take over at shortstop. But he entered Wednesday batting .312/.345/.471 with five homers and 18 RBIs in 138 at-bats over 37 games.

"He's just a really nice performer offensively," Price said. "He surprised me a little bit with his offense. He's been very productive in run-producing opportunities."

Cozart suffered a torn ACL and LCL in his knee and was expected to miss nine months. Price received a report on him recently that said that Cozart was was able to walk without the need of crutches.

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.