Friday, March 2, 2012

Catcher Notes: Pudge, Molina, Napoli, Varitek, Molina

Ivan Rodriguez has stated an interest in playing again this season. The former MVP has proven more than durable, carving out a major league spot behind the plate that has spanned more than two decades. Pudge can't hit like he used to, and he is coming off an injury riddled season, but he could prove relevant to a team who wants a decent bat off the bench, or just one looking for some veteran influence.
The Cardinals have extended Yadier Molina to a 5 year $75MM dollar contract. Extending catchers is always risky as it is an oft-injured position but talent like Yadier's is rare and the 3x All Star is still pretty young, and seemingly only getting better. Assuming he hits anywhere close to the way he has been for two or three of these contract seasons, maintains his glove and stays healthy, this contract will look like a bargain. Hopefully the front office told him to stop reinforcing Brandon Phillips' claims that the St. Louis Cardinals are all "little bitches" so he can refrain from flipping out and throwing punches or spitting all over the place every time he gets upset about something.
Mike Napoli was acquired for next to nothing from the Blue Jays (who incidentally acquired him only a few days before for VERNON WELLS. Still blown away by that one.) and flourished in his first year in Texas. In the latter half of the season he hit almost .400, and while that is a complete anomaly, it proves his bat is legit. He announced earlier this week that he wants to test free agency. My guess is that he plays his ass off and earns a four a five year extension with Texas that will see him in a DH role by the end of his contract.
Long time Red Sox Captain Jason Varitek and veteran backstop Bengie Molina announced their retirements earlier this week. I'm just writing this in to say congrats to the two of them on two long lasting careers. I'd be shocked if Varitek didn't stay in Boston and get some sort of front office/managerial position at some point.

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