MLB Rumors – Red Sox Have Catchers; Rangers & Astros Want One. Trade?

Sandy Leon

The Boston Red Sox has one of those good problems to have at catcher: Too much depth. This means someone is going to be traded, with the Texas Rangers and Houston Astros especially tuning in.

At the moment, it looks like Blake Swihart is going to be the starting catcher on the Red Sox, although Christian Vazquez is probably better defensively, and seems to have recovered well from his Tommy John surgery. Ryan Hanigan and Sandy Leon (who isn’t even on the 40-man roster) seem to be a bit more available; especially Hanigan. He hit .247/.337/.328 with a .664 OPS (his best since 2012), while playing good defense.

Sometimes it’s not the ability, but the salary. Hanigan is owed just $3.7 million (team option in 2017), which means anyone looking for a cheap starter or someone to rotate the position with, Hanigan seems like a good option that won’t take a toll on the team financially. Sandy Leon has been hitting better than Hanigan in spring training, but had just an .184 batting average for the Red Sox in 2015, playing 41 games for them.

In any case, both Swihart (24, coming off a strong first season, making just over $500,000) and Vazquez (batted well in 2014) are going to be the future starters for the Red Sox, at least one of them is. Both Hanigan and Leon are free to go if some sort of offer comes their way (nothing too fancy, the Red Sox won’t hold on to either of them for too long), but it seems Leon, who is being paid commensurate with a front-line depth optionis the more likely of the two more experienced players to stick around if it’s just one of them being moved.

Robinson Chirino is the projected starter at Catcher for the Rangers in 2016, with Chris Gimenez behind him. For the Astros, it’s Jason Castro as the #1 option, followed by Max Stassi.

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