Cleat Geeks

Bravos Buzz

The Bravos’ Catching Platoon

Baseball fans start getting excited around this time of year because spring training is just around the corner. Pitchers and catchers will be reporting this Saturday for the year’s first workouts, which means spring training will officially kick off this weekend! Time to knock the cobwebs off of those bats and mitts!

a.j.-pierzynski-julio

Since teams’ batteries will be practicing first, let’s focus on breaking down the Bravos’ battery heading into this year’s campaign. Over the next two weeks, we’ll take a very close look at the Braves’ catchers (this week) and pitchers (next week).

So who will be lining up behind the plate this year for the Braves? Well, there isn’t just one answer to that. The Braves will be using platoons (more than one player) in a few different positions this year, catcher being one of them. There are two players who will be splitting time at the catcher position this season.

BravesAJDefense

Catcher number one should come as no surprise. It’s A.J. Pierzynski. Last year, Pierzynski’s play was fantastic, so the Braves signed him for another year in the off-season. His bat was highly effective last season (he had a .300/.339/.430 slash line with 49 RBIs and nine home runs in 407 at bats over 113 games), and the Braves are hoping for more of the same this year; although, he he’ll probably only play in around 80 games this season if everything goes as planned. His offense isn’t the only thing that gives Pierzynski value to the Braves. His veteran presence is a big part of why they decided to stick with Pierzynski for the 2016 season. The Braves believe that Pierzynski’s veteran presence is just what their young pitchers need. Pierzynski has been around for a long time. He began his professional career in Minnesota’s farm system as a 17-year-old back in 1994! It’s safe to say that there isn’t a whole lot this guy hasn’t seen behind the plate. He has a wealth of battery knowledge that the Braves’ young pitching staff can feed off of. Pierzynski isn’t going to light the world of fire with his defensive abilities, but he’s good enough to get the job done. Seeing as to how Pierzynski is 39 years old, it’s safe to say that the platoon situation works well for him because it takes a considerable amount of wear and tear off of his body over the course of the year.

AJ P Braves

Catcher number two is a new face in town… kind of. It’s Tyler Flowers. Flowers wasn’t a part of the club last year, but he’s no stranger to Atlanta. He grew up in Roswell, Georgia, and the Braves drafted him in 2005. He spent 2005-2008 with the Braves’ farm system, and then he was traded to the Chicago White Sox. He stayed with Chicago until the Brave signed him again last December. He isn’t as gifted with the bat as Pierzynski, but he makes up for his mediocre offence with above average defense. He is one of the best pitch framers in baseball, and he is known for doing a good job calling games from behind the plate. He’s not quite as old as Pierzynski, but he still qualifies as a veteran — Flowers is 30 years old and has been a pro since 2005. Much like Pierzynski, the Braves really value his veteran presence.

Tyler-Flowers

The Braves’ front office is obviously of the belief that these two savvy vets will be able to help get their young pitchers through tough spots and be able to teach them about hitters and tendencies this season, thus greatly helping the development of their young staff. Fans are also hoping that these two veteran catchers will be able to do just that.

Braves-Flowers

Leave a Reply

GET YOUR  ON!

If you like this site or just simply want to school your friends because you got the information first.  

Join us on the field! Click on any of the links below.

%d bloggers like this: