Catching conundrum for D-backs
So here we are again, heading into another season with the D-backs essentially having two starting catchers.
At the end of last season it seemed all but certain that Chris Snyder would not be in Tucson when Spring Training started.
“Surprised to see me?” he asked to me by way of a greeting the other day.
Actually, I was.
The D-backs nearly traded Snyder to the Blue Jays for first baseman Lyle Overbay in November, but the Jays backed out at the last minute.
So far, Snyder looks completely recovered from last September’s back surgery and it’s also clear he’s going to push Miguel Montero, who took over the starting job last year following Snyder’s injury, for playing time.
“I think A.J. and the staff will determine how best to use those guys,” GM Josh Byrnes said referring to manager A.J. Hinch and his coaches. “We clearly have two No. 1 caliber catchers so we’ll figure it out as we go.”
Montero hits left-handed and Snyder right-handed, but it won’t be a true platoon.
“Miggy showed last year he can hit left-handed pitching and Snydes in 2008 hit right-handed pitching very well so it won’t be as simple as that,” Byrnes said.
And it also looks like the D-backs are not going to deal Snyder at least any time soon.
“That’s our assumption right now,” Byrnes said. “Obviously we had those discussions and made an attempt early and there is a point at which it becomes less realistic. So right now I think it’s prudent to assume that’s going to be our catching combination.”
Now it falls on Hinch to figure out how to keep both catchers happy and productive.
“It’s something I’m going to have to sort out playing time wise over the season,” Hinch said. “But to go in strong, to go in healthy…to me I have no complaints. I never have a problem with too many good guys.”
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