Friday, January 13, 2017

Adding a catching contender

I said here a few days ago that the Twins would bring in at least one more non-roster invitee catcher, basing that on the slim number of receivers scheduled to be in training camps (five). The guy they signed Thursday is a bit more than another body.

Gimenez is a catcher, not a hitter -- 34 years old, eight years with MLB time, a career high of 155 plate appearances last season, and a lifetime .632 OPS. He has never spent more than two years with the same team. but he's had three different stints with Cleveland (Derek Falvey) and two with Texas (Thad Levine). Last year he was with Cleveland, splitting the catching chores with Roberto Perez after Yan Gomes' injury and serving as the No. 2 catcher in the first round of the playoffs.

It's his links to Falvey and Levine that make me suspect that, even though Gimenez is not on the 40 and John Ryan Murphy and Mitch Garver are, that Gimenez may be the favorite now for the No. 2 role. He's right-handed, which fits the concept of a platoon with the left-handed hitting Jason Castro, and his career splits suggest that he may even be a competent hitter against lefties (.750 OPS, albeit it less than 250 at-bats).

My belief is that Garver and Murphy offer more ability at the plate than Gimenez. But that's not necessarily what Falvey and Levine are looking for in a backup catcher, and neither has proven it yet anyway.

No comments:

Post a Comment