32-year old righty swinging Yorvit Torrealba will be the Rangers’ starting catcher in 2011. Torrealba played in 95 games for the Padres last season and he was 88 of 325 (.271 avg, .721 OPS) with 31 runs scored, 7 homers, 37 RBIs and 7 stolen bases. His power numbers will likely increase with him playing his home games in Texas instead of San Diego. He only made 3 errors in 92 games for the Padres last season but he had 7 passed balls and that’s way too many. Torrealba threw out 13 of 60 (21.7%) runners trying to steal against him last season and Padres’ pitchers loved throwing to him as they had a 3.14 ERA with him behind the plate. The Rangers pitchers are going to benefit with Torrealba behind the plate as long as he cuts down on the passed balls.
34-year old righty swinging Matt Treanor will likely be the Rangers’ #2 catcher in 2011. Treanor played in 82 games for the Rangers last season and he was 50 of 237 (.211 avg, .595 OPS) with 22 runs scored, 5 homers, 27 RBIs and 1 stolen base. Treanor only had 3 errors and 2 passed balls in 81 games behind the plate for the Rangers last season. He threw out 11 of 61 (18.0%) runners trying to steal against him last season and Rangers’ pitchers liked throwing to him as they had a 3.92 ERA with Treanor behind the plate.
29-year old righty swinging Mike Napoli will get most of his P.T. at 1B and DH in 2011 for the Rangers but he can catch if needed. Napoli made 6 errors and he had 5 passed balls in only 66 games behind the plate for the Angels last season. He also threw out 13 of 71 (18.3%) runners trying to steal against him while Angels’ pitchers had a 5.13 ERA with him behind the plate. Let’s face it, Napoli was acquired for his bat, not his glove. The Rangers hope they don’t need Napoli to catch much in 2011 due to his defensive issues.
27-year old righty swinging, former top prospect Taylor Teagarden is running out of time to prove himself for the Rangers. He played in 28 games for the Rangers last season in which he was 11 of 71 (.155 avg, .597 OPS) with 10 runs scored, 4 homers and 6 RBIs. Teagarden often looked helpless with a bat in his hands as he whiffed 34 times last season! Teagarden had 2 errors and 3 passed balls in only 28 games behind the plate for the Rangers last season. He only threw out 3 of 18 (16.7%) runners trying to steal on him last season and Rangers’ pitchers had a 4.30 ERA with him behind the plate. Teagarden will likely start the season in AAA and he better have a good year there or the Rangers might give up on him.
33-year old righty swinging Kevin Cash played in 49 games for the Astros & Red Sox last season in which he was 19 of 114 (.167 avg, .483 OPS) with 4 runs scored, 2 homers and 5 RBIs. In parts of 8 years in the majors, Cash has a .183 career average with a .526 OPS in 246 games as he is one of the worst hitters around. He only made 1 error in 48 games in the majors last season but he also had 7 passed balls as he was Tim Wakefield’s personal catcher in Boston. Cash threw out 5 of 45 (11.1%) runners trying to steal against him last season and pitchers had a 4.16 ERA with him behind the plate.
PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE RANGERS CATCHERS IN 2011: C