Friday, December 26, 2014

The wandering Pierzynski

I was reminded on Christmas Eve of the old baseball chestnut,  "The best moves are the ones you don't make."

What reminded me of that was the news that A.J. Pierzynski had signed with the Atlanta Braves.

The Twins, you may recall, were hot for their former catcher last winter, but he spurned their two-year offer to take a one-year deal with the Boston Red Sox. It was an understandable decision; Pierzynski was a well-used 36, the Sox were defending World Series champs, and A.J. was chasing another ring.

It didn't work for him in Boston. The Sox released him during the All-Star break with their typical reputation-smearing whisper campaign. He finished the season with the Cardinals and didn't hit with them either.

And now Atlanta, where he probably projects as a backup, although it's not easy to discern the Braves' direction this offseason. As I said last summer, Pierzynski's days as a No. 1 catcher appear to be over. He can probably milk a few more seasons out of his career as a backup, but he's not going to stick in any one place for more than a year.

The Twins settled last year for Kurt Suzuki, who is about six years younger than Piersynski and rewarded the Twins with the best offensive season of his career. Even so, he tailed off rather sharply in the second half, the slump seemingly coming after he signed a two-year extension, and we'll see if the Twins get their money's worth out of the new deal.

Their second choice last December was certainly better than their first choice.

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