Even after Pena's return, Barnhart still a Red

Proper development the primary concern for promising backstop

Even after Pena's return, Barnhart still a Red

CINCINNATI -- Catcher Tucker Barnhart, who was recalled from Triple-A Louisville on Sunday when Brayan Pena was placed on the paternity list, remains with the Reds, even though Pena has returned to the club.

"I haven't made that decision [on whether to keep Barnhart with the Major League club]," manager Bryan Price said. "That'll be something I talk about with our staff and with [general manager Walt Jocketty]. The one thing that is very important with Tucker is that he continues to develop, because we feel that he's going to be a part of this team and this organization for a long time."

In 10 games with Cincinnati this season, Barnhart is hitting .107 (3-for-28) with a home run. In 47 games with Louisville, he batted .227 with eight doubles, three triples, a homer and 18 RBIs.

"If I get to the point where I put Pena more as a -- I don't want to say full-time -- but a primary first baseman, then that would create a little bit more opportunity for Tucker," Price said. "But still, Devin [Mesoraco] is going to get a lion's share of the playing time [at catcher].

"We'll see where it goes. Right now, we just want to make sure Brayan's feeling good and that he's completely healthy, and that he can hold down the responsibility of catching maybe two or three times every 10 days. If that's OK, then we'll have to make the decision on what to do with Tucker."

Manny Randhawa is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.