Dodgers: Catcher Options to Pair With Austin Barnes
The Dodgers have shown interest in Martin Maldonado this off-season and out of the three backup catcher options in this article, he is my favorite. Maldonado has one of the best arms in baseball among catchers and that is evidenced by his 37% caught stealing percentage for his career. That ranks him second in baseball just three percent behind Yadier Molina who leads all catchers in caught stealing percentage.
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Maldonado did have a career-worst season defensively with thirteen passed balls but that is far from his career average so he should bounce back in 2019. He had four errors this season so he had a solid season other than allowing too many passed balls. As a backup catcher with the Dodgers, Martin Maldonado would be a good backstop who could finally limit the opposing run game.
Offensively, Maldonado does not bring much to the plate as he is a career .220 hitter. He does have a little power as he slugged nine home runs this last season after hitting fourteen home runs a season ago. Any offense that he brought along would just be a bonus since his main function is to keep an opponent’s run game in check.
The Dodgers don’t have a ton of options at catcher with their two top catching prospects at least a half season away, and the free agent market being scarce outside of Yasmani Grandal. Unless the Dodgers and Marlins finally meet a fair asking price for Realmuto, the Dodgers will likely enter 2019 with Austin Barnes as their catcher. Cervelli, Maldonado, and Hundley are three of the top options to pair Barnes with.