2010 Offseason: Catcher

(shout out to Vince in MN)

Yorvit Torrealba: 32/.271/.343/.378

Victor Martinez: 31/.302/.351/.493

A.J. Pierzynski: 33/.270/.300/.388

John Buck: 30/.281/.314/.489

Alex Avila: 23/.228/.316/.340

Buck is the cream of the crop, but he’s going to be pursued by quite a few teams, and 30 may be a little old for the long term deal that I’m guessing he’ll be looking for.  I don’t think Martinez makes any sense because he’s primarily 1B/DH these days, and we’ve already got Guillen penciled in at DH.  Don’t get me wrong, I’d love Martinez, but we already have a DH who will spend 1/3 of the season on the DL.  I think I could deal with Pierzynski on a one year deal (though it would need to be less than the $6.75M he made last year) if he could help to groom Avila, or provide a bridge to whomever is next in line.

Bryan Holaday looks to be the only promising player in the farm system, and he’s likely a few years away from being ready to compete for the big league job. (He spent all of last year at Lakeland.)

What are your thoughts?  Can you figure out a way to make Martinez work?  Who’s in the John Buck hunt?  White Sox, Rangers and Mets come to mind.

3 thoughts on “2010 Offseason: Catcher”

  1. God bless you Sparky.

    I’ll remember you jumping over the chalk on the way to the mound; Talking to fans at the 1988 Fenway opener and throwing your arm around journeyman Paul Gibson before the player introduction and an epic Clemens/Morris matchup. There was your trademark half-wave and grin offered to Tigers fans after a sweep at Comiskey in the eighties. And were those tears in your eye as you waved to the fans on your last visit to Fenway?

    Wish I could have met you.

    Sparky and Ernie in the same year, that’s a lot to take.

  2. I think the Tigers should go hard after Martinez. He is a Switch hitter with some pop which will provide the much needed LH bat. He can spell Cabrera at 1B from time to time, catch 40% (or more if Avila bombs) and DH the rest of the time (I expect Guillen to be injured for about 100 games or so, so don’t think he is going to factor in next year – his health history has been too iffy and if they are serious about making a push for the division championship, it would be foolish to hand over that role to Carlos). I don’t necessarily have difficulty with a long-term (4-5 years) contract, since he would eventually (sooner rather than later probably) be phased out of the catcher role (when the Tigers get a manager that understands what a DH is for). Some might say that we’d have to carry another C if Martinez was DHing a lot, but remembr that the Twins DH Mauer plenty without carrying a third catcher and it hasn’t been troublesome for them. In a dire emergency Inge can fill in for a game before St. Pierre (or whoever) gets the call from Toledo – DD and Leyland have excelled at using Toledo/Erie as an extended roster the last few years. As much as I would love to see Crawford, Dunn or Werth, I think those three are all extremely long shots to sign this winter. And they’ll probably all sign late too, so go for Martinez and then continue to chase that power bat OF that we also desperately need.

    I am greatly saddend by the passing of old Sparky. A real class act both on and off the field.

  3. Unless they are going after Martinez, I would keep Avila as the starter. I think he showed enough potential in the final weeks to be worth spending a year of experience on. If they plan on being the same non playoff team they have been the past 2 seasons, then he needs to catch. I would only go for a free agent catcher if they end up getting an outfielder. The catcher position isn’t worth messing around with if they don’t get the rest of the lineup sorted out.

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