Atlanta Braves Making The Team Meter 2013: Catchers, Week 2

Looks like he wants to be the backup catcher sometime... - US PRESSWIRE

Talking Chop takes a look at every catcher in the Atlanta Braves spring training camp, and examines the chance each one of them has at making the club to open the season.

The Atlanta Braves Making The Team Meter continues today with week two of the catchers. We've never done an MTM just for catchers. In fact, for the last few years we haven't even included catchers in the hitters section thanks to the reliability of Brian McCann and David Ross.

But this year is different. Ross has left us for Boston, and McCann is likely going to begin the year on the disabled list recovering from right shoulder surgery that he had in October. For now the only catcher we can assume has made the roster is new arrival Gerald Laird (click here for a great article by Mark Bowman on the new Braves catcher). Last week's catcher's MTM here.

Here are the rest of the rest of the contenders to begin the year as the backup to Laird until McCann is ready to return.

Catcher Trend Last Week Roster Status Notes and Comments
Christian Bethancourt
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40-Man There's been some talk about how Bethancourt's swing has really improved. There's no doubt he's a solid defensive catcher, but one spring is not going to change the team's mind that he needs to prove himself over a full season in the minors. Let's move him down a notch.
Luis De La Cruz
Cut from MTM
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NRI For a guy who was considered an all-defense no-bat catcher, he hasn't gotten a chance to prove himself with just one at bat in the first week of games. I doubt that will change, so we'll cut him from our list.
Evan Gattis
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NRI The "kid" is hitting .462/.500/.846 -- hottest bat on the team this spring. So I guess I've gotta keep him at a green arrow. If he keeps this up it's going to make it very hard for the Braves to keep him off the roster. They may prefer that he try and improve as a catcher in the minors this year, and he could still slump this spring... I guess. If the Braves find a good match with prospects coming back, Gattis may attract some interest as a trade candidate to an AL team where he could be a valuable DH.
Matt Kennelly
Cut from MTM
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NRI He's off to play in the World Baseball Classic, and he didn't even get an at-bat in a spring game. He was a super long shot, so we'll cut him from our watch list.
Brian McCann
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40-Man He took batting practice for the first time today, and it on schedule for an April return. When in April is up for debate, though it's looking less and less likely that he will be ready in time for opening day. So we'll slid him down a notch. Read more about his BP session here.
Matt Pagnozzi
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NRI Other than Gattis, Pagnozzi has gotten the most work at catcher this spring. He came in as the likely front runner to start the season as the backup catcher, and nothing has changed.
Braeden Schlehuber
Cut from MTM
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NRI He hasn't played yet. He'll probably get into a few games and then get moved down to minor league camp. We'll cut him from our watch list.
Jose Yepez
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NRI I still think that Yepez has a good shot at the backup catcher job. We'll see if he gets the at-bats and gets a chance. It might turn into an interesting battle between Yepez and Pagnozzi (as much as backup catcher can be interesting).

Arrow Key:
Nav_up_green_medium = Chance of making the team is good.
Nav_up_yellow_medium = Chance of making the team is slightly better than 50-50.
Nav_down_yellow_medium = Chance of making the team is slightly worse than 50-50.
Nav_down_red_medium = Chance of making the team is bad.
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