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Posted 05 May 2016 - 05:53 PM
by LAURA ALBANESEfirstname.lastname@example.org
Rene Rivera is a defensively sound journeyman catcher who has a reputation for calling a good game and spent the early portion of the season in the minor leagues. And he’s “challenged” offensively.
At its best, that’s faint praise, but what Rivera showed Wednesday in the Mets’ 8-0 drubbing of the Braves is something worth noting: His career bouncing around the majors has helped the 32-year-old acclimate to pitchers quickly, like he did with Steven Matz during the 24-year-old’s masterful performance, and by the time it was all over, Matz himself was praising Rivera for the work he did behind the plate.
As for the offensive liability part? Well, yes, he hit .178 with the Tampa Bay Rays last season, but if his second-inning, two-run homer off Jhoulys Chacin is any indication, there might still be a little juice in that bat.
“He catches a great game,” Terry Collins said. He “hits a home run, that’s huge and that even helps the guy he’s backing up — ‘Hey look, if I have a day off, things are going to run smoothly.’ I’ll bet you tomorrow night, Kevin [Plawecki] plays very well.”
With Travis d’Arnaud on the disabled list (strained right rotator cuff), a reliable third-string catcher is a boon for the Mets. And one who can effectively wrangle their young guns is a premium. Which means Wednesday’s showing is especially encouraging.
“You’ve got to be honest with yourself,” Rivera said. “I know I can produce, but my main concern is my pitching staff and how I can help them to have the best game they can have at that moment. That’s where my concentration goes.”
Posted 19 August 2017 - 10:59 AM
by CHARLIE WILMOTH
The Cubs have claimed catcher Rene Rivera off waivers from the Mets, the teams have announced. To clear space for Rivera on their roster, the Cubs have designated righty Aaron Brooks for assignment.
Rivera is the latest veteran to leave the Mets this month, following the trades of Jay Bruce, Neil Walker and Curtis Granderson. The 34-year-old Rivera has hit a modest .230/.278/.391 in 187 plate appearances this season and has never been an outstanding hitter, with a career .215/.266/.340 line in parts of nine big-league seasons with the Mariners, Twins, Padres and Rays in addition to the Mets. He has, however, long rated as a strong defender and framer, two skills the Cubs surely value. (The Cubs had, in fact, been connected to Rivera before they acquired Alex Avila last month.) With Willson Contreras on the DL with a hamstring strain, Rivera will presumably back up Avila. He is making $1.75MM this season and is eligible for free agency at season’s end.
The 27-year-old Brooks arrived from the Athletics organization prior to the 2016 season and initially looked like he would provide good starting pitching depth, but he missed most of that season with a hip issue and hasn’t been the same since, posting a 6.20 ERA, 6.8 K/9, 1.8 BB/9 and 27 home runs allowed in 138 innings this season with Triple-A Iowa. He pitched for the Royals and A’s in 2015 but has not appeared in the big leagues since.
Posted 21 August 2017 - 08:26 PM
I see the logic in not looking to re-sign him with the salary bump he is likely to get but he is going to be missed. He was the only catcher that could actually throw a runner out.
plawecki doesn't suck as a catcher, he just hitting MLB pitching...but I'll agree that Travis no'D has no business being behind the plate...ever...
I just hope that Thomas Nido puts himself into MLB consideration...soon
Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:49 PM
Catcher is not a position of strength through out MLB. TDA/Plaw is probably league average.
Lucroy is a free agent, but I would avoid him. Fading, defensive metrics cratering, getting older and will want a contract that covers his decline years. So he can turn into what we already have?
The player that greatly interests me is Wellington Castillo from the Orioles. Currently playing his age 30 season, with a slash line of .229/.336/.514/.851 with a caught stealing % around 50%. Yes, that is not a typo, 50%. Has a $7M player option on his contract that he would be a fool not to decline.
Either him or the current combo.
Posted 09 September 2017 - 09:36 PM
As I posted in the shoutbox, the negative attention we get at the catcher's position is really not deserved.
League rate stats for catchers:
Mets' catchers total rates (all players who have started games for us regardless of whether they are still on the squad:
Pretty much the same.
Plawecki .238/.310/.365 20% CS rate
d'Arnaud: .237/.284/.411 with a 17% CS rate
Pretty much the same.
League average CS rate is 27%, and as I also noted, you can attribute most of that difference between league and Mets average to the terrible assistance that the pitching staff gives them.
Looking objectively, our catchers are giving us exactly what we could expect from a league average catching staff.
- mjjm367 and yogib8 like this