Monday, November 01, 2004

Free Agent Catchers

Aaron Gleeman has a look at the catchers who will be available this offseason. After Jason Varitek, it's not pretty - Damian Miller is the second best choice, and after that there's Doug Mirabelli, Todd Pratt and some tumbleweeds. It should be a big priority for the Red Sox to sign Varitek; if they don't, they'll have a huge dropoff at catcher that will be difficult to make up for elsewhere.

In addition to Boston, there are a number of possible contenders and/or big spenders who might be looking for catching help this offseason: offhand, there's the Dodgers, the White Sox, the A's, and possibly the Mets. (The Astros and Cardinals probably each ought to consider getting a new catcher but probably won't.)

What this means to me is that if the Pirates are determined to trade Jason Kendall, they'll probably do it this offseason. I don't want them to trade Kendall - they won't get nearly enough talent in return, and the money saved on Kendall's contract probably won't be used to help the team - but if I did, I'd want them to wait until Varitek signed somewhere and the other catching-thin teams started to feel the strain.

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