Jul 12, 2014; Milwaukee, WI, USA; St. Louis Cardinals catcher George Kottaras flies out in the eighth inning during the game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park. Kottaras was added to the active roster on Saturday. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
There will be some type of competition at catcher for the Chicago White Sox this spring, or at least they won’t have a shortage of the position once pitchers and catchers arrive at spring training.
On Thursday, it was reported the White Sox signed George Kottaras to a minor league deal.
Comcast Sports Net reported the following on the newest catcher in the White Sox organization:
"“Kottaras likely will join Rob Brantly and Adrian Nieto in competing during spring training to be Tyler Flowers‘ backup. Over his seven-year major league career, Kottaras has a .215/.326/.411 slash line with 32 home runs in 313 games.”"
Brantley was signed by the White Sox this offseason as well, while Nieto was the backup catcher in ’14.
I like the below-the-radar move by General Manager Rick Hahn and Co. for the simple fact there will be competition at the position this season, and who is to say the starting catcher’s job is safe, either?
Flowers does have the best chance at returning as the starting catcher for the White Sox, but who knows, stranger things have happened.
With Kottaras on the 40-man roster, that now gives them five catchers on the 40-man, which also includes Keavan Smith.
In looking at Kottaras’ stats from his three MLB stops in ’14, he played in a combined 18 games for the Cleveland Indians (10), St. Louis Cardinals (4) and the Toronto Blue Jays (4).
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Those handful of games saw Kottaras have a .233 batting average with a .351 on-base percentage and .533 slugging percentage.
With the Indians, he played in 10 games with 21 at-bats, and with the AL Central foe, he walked four times and had six hits (including three home runs).
Kottaras also has a 1.000 fielding percentage in 82 innings behind the plate. He caught 59 innings with the Indians, 11 with the Cardinals and 12 with the Blue Jays. He was also a part of one double play.
Like with all MiLB contracts, I have no problem with them, because what would be a best case scenario is the White Sox can get a quality player on the cheap, and after spending millions on the “Big 3” this offseason, a good deal here and there is always a good thing to have.