A Golden Age of Catcher Hitting?
From Christina Kahrl at Baseball Prospectus on March 8:
You know only too well how this particular saw goes: It’s hard to find good catching, it’s always in short supply, and sometimes it’s a matter of stocking the slot with a player familiar with the tools of ignorance, merely as a matter of having enough receivers to go around. Catchers are hard to find, donchaknow.
As a result, there are also are our favorite targets, the symbols of the kinds of catchers you didn’t want to be stuck with if you were running a fantasy team, or stuck rooting for if your club had the mixed fortune to wind up employing them. No matter what vintage your fandom dates from, you know who I’m talking about: In the ’80s, you were probably making fun of a decision to play Bob Boone daily, in the ’90s you were mocking Brad Ausmus, and by the Aughties maybe Dioner Navarro was the target of your informed derision.
However, having both [the Astros’ Jesus] Flores and [the Yankees’ Jesus] Montero wearing chest protectors would also represent part of a growing trend, one that defies the proposition that finding good enough offensive help behind the plate isn’t quite so tough as it was once. If anything, we’re in a golden age of catcher hitting, something that has everything to do with the adaptive choices teams are making to make sure they don’t have to wind up with no-hit backstops.
Read the full article here: http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=13162 (subscription required)
Originally published: March 8, 2011. Last Updated: March 8, 2011.