The New York Yankees and San Francisco Giants have struck a small deal for journeyman catcher Rob Brantly. He was picked 100th overall in the MLB 2010 draft by the Tigers. In his MLB career so far, he’s spent time with the White Sox, Marlins, Phillies, and Giants. He was added to the Yankees’ 60 man roster and was sent to their alternative site.
Adding Catching Depth
While Gary Sanchez and Erik Kratz have held the fort down, for doubleheaders, if there are any prominent injuries, it makes sense to have a 4th in-house option. In his career, Brantly has a 72 wRC+ and -2.2 fWAR, so while he hasn’t had a very successful career, the Yankees still need the depth. He’s also the only left-handed hitting catcher on this MLB roster, so he can perhaps find some success in an MLB friendly park. He has shown signs of being able to hit in the minor leagues, as in his last AAA stint, he had an above .400 OBP.
So far, in 2020, Brantly has only one game played where he went 0-3.
Classic Sneaky Solid Move
This move doesn’t catch your eye and doesn’t blow you away, but it does work as a sound baseball move. You give up small cash considerations and get a 3rd catcher as Higashioka has been hurt. It makes sense, and it’s a position that just needs guys to play as depth. I don’t expect Brantly to be a mainstay in the lineup, but I do expect him to be waiting in the wing if the injury bug strikes again. This is just Cashman making sure he has guys to bring up if there’s an emergency.
People may not appreciate the move, but it’s a logical move. Welcome to the Bronx Rob Brantly, we hope to see you do well in pinstripes!