There is no positional battle at the catching spot this spring. Everybody knows that Ivan Rodriguez is the starter and that Vance Wilson is the backup. One question concerning Rodriguez is whether he will regain some of the production which he failed to show in 2005 but that’s something that can’t really be answered until the regular season.
A bigger question is what happens if Pudge goes down for a significant period of time with an injury? Although
The first option would probably be Maxim St. Pierre. Max has the coolest name and is also the most advanced of the five non-roster invitees. Assistant General Manager, Al Avila, recently said that
Another one who could be re-called if anything were to happen to Rodriguez is Brian Peterson. Peterson, who spent the last 4 years in AA Chattanooga in the Reds organization seems to be a Max St.Pierre clone. Like
They do have a couple of catchers lower in the system who are a bit more intriguing even though they wouldn’t be ready this year. The best hitting prospect is Danilo Sanchez. He is 25 years old and has never played above A ball but he put up some impressive numbers at
Chris Robinson, the third round pick in the 2005 draft, is considered by many to be the best all around catching prospect in the system. The report on him is that he is a good defensive catcher who needs to work on his offensive game Right now he doesn’t project to be more than an average hitting catcher but he is just 21 and has time to improve. He’ll catch for
The other catcher in camp is Mike Rabelo. Rabelo is another fringe prospect who will likely backup Sanchez at
So the answer to the question posed above is that the Tigers don’t have a legitimate replacement for Rodriguez this year and any significant injury to him would create a tough problem for the team.