Monday, August 4, 2008

What to do with the Rangers catching situation?

So, the our peppy little bunch of baseball players in Arlington have themselves a nice little problem. A whole bunch of guys who play catcher really well, and no one knows who to annoint the current guy, the backup guy, and the "next guy".

Let's break down the main guys in the discussion...

Gerald Laird

The current starter. Laird took over the job from Rod Barajas in 2007 after being the backup in 2006. Laird hasn't exactly been hitting the shit out of the ball, though his 2 HR night did win it for the Rangers yetserday, and he's not the world's greatest defensive backstop either. However, he hasn't really been challenged by the three names below. However, Laird is not to be stolen on, as his arm guns down damn near everyone who tries. Laird is currently coveted by the rest of fucking Major League Baseball.

Jarrod Saltalamacchia

Salty will forever be linked in Ranger lore as "the guy we got for Tex". In fact, now with Tex on the Angels, let's see if that conversation at the plate ever happens. Interesting about Salty is that he's also a first basemen. Problem is, Chris Davis has been kicking ass, Salty may not be at home their either (and he has said he's much more interested in catching). Salty's been the backup for Laird this season, and has become more comfortable at the plate, though his batting average isn't blowing anyone's skirt up. Salty could be the guy for the future, but he needs the time to dig in and get used to things. Seems every time he gets in, Laird comes back and Salty is back on the bench. Terrible defense, but fiery bat.

Max Ramirez

Might be having the best season of his young career this year. Ramirez is young, so he's thought to be in the "catcher of the future" mold, but people think with the way he's been playing, he might be ready for today. Ramirez's bat is pretty attractive, and his defense is so-so. So he's a lot more of a guy who could also DH and provide value to the team.

Taylor Teagarden

Has been in the system longer than Ramirez, but he got jumped. Also, more of a defensive catcher that tends to work with his pitchers a bit better. Teagarden is also considered to be one of the "catchers of the future", but in his stance, he could be the every day guy. Teagarden is showing his ability to be a defensive mastermind, and I'd bet Jaramillo could work on his bat.

Program Alert: Erin Andrews is going to be in Arlington on Wednesday to cover the Rangers and Yankees. Oh yeah, so will A-Rod, Pudge and the rest of the Yankees.

Side note: What's a safer bet: Big can spell "Saltalamacchia" without any help or Big solves the mystery of cold fusion?

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