White Sox: Who will earn backup catcher spot?
Jul 2, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Miami Marlins catcher Rob Brantly (19) fields a ground ball for an out in the sixth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
Weight: 195 pounds
If there is one catcher on the current White Sox 40-man roster who will really compete for the backup catchers role it will be Brantly, whom the White Sox claimed off waivers from the Marlins this winter.
Brantly is 25 years old and has played parts of the past two seasons at the MLB level, where he’s batted .290 in 31 games during the ’12 season and .211 in ’13 (67 games).
Last season, Brantly played 101 games with New Orleans in the Pacific Coast League, and at the Triple-A level, he finished with a .255 average with 93 hits, including 15 doubles and two triples. Brantly also hit four home runs and forced 20 walks.
During his time in the majors with the Marlins, Brantly has a WAR of 0.6 in ’12 (31 games) and -1.1 (67 games) in ’13.
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His fielding numbers behind the plate aren’t bad, either, with a .990 fielding percentage with a combined seven errors in 93 combined MLB games.
What I’m interested with Brantly this spring is seeing how he competes with Nieto for the backup role, and if he’s able to show enough progression from his past season in the minors to show the White Sox he’s capable of being the full-time backup catcher on the South Side.