Thursday, September 20, 2018

Mitch Garver's future

The Twins sent two injured players, Eddie Rosario and Mitch Garver, back to the Twin Cities on Wednesday rather than have them make the long haul out to Oakland. Not only was it obvious that neither would play in Oakland, it's quite possible that both are done for what remains of the season.

This is not the first notable concussion Garver's sustained; he had one a few years ago when he was in Cedar Rapids. And he's a catcher, the position most vulnerable to head injuries because of the foul tips and occasional bat backlashes.

Two tweets:

I get what Steve's saying, but: Where else other than catcher is he going to play?

Garver is 27, so he's already in the peak phase of his career. His hitting is -- good for a catcher, but his OPS+ is a tick under league average, which means it's not really good enough to play a corner position such as first base or left field. 

The "offensive potential" Berardino cites is based almost entirely on being a league-average hitter at catcher. The Twins have better hitting options at any other postions Garver might reasonably play.

Not that Garver is a stellar defensive catcher either. Another tweet:

Yeah. A poor pitch framer who has been behind the plate for nine wild pitches and 33 passed balls in just under 670 innings and has thrown out just 18 percent of the base stealers. He'd better hit.

All of which leads me to suspect that those of us trying to project Willians Astudillo as a utility man for the 2019 Twins might be missing a more significant point: He may be a better choice as the No. 2 catcher (behind Jason Castro) than Garver.

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