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CLEVELAND (AP) — The Indians have replenished their bare catching cupboard.After trading top prospect Francisco Mejia and All-Star catcher Yan Gomes last year Jose Peraza Jersey , the Indians had a void behind the plate and filled it Sunday by acquiring catcher Kevin Plawecki in a trade with the New York Mets.The three-time defending AL champions sent right-hander Walker Lockett and infielder Sam Haggerty to New York for Plawecki, who played in 78 games — 64 starts — for the Mets last season. Plawecki batted .201 with seven homers and a career-high 30 RBIs.The Indians were in the market for a catcher after dealing Gomes to the Washington Nationals in December.“We’re excited to add Kevin to our major league catching mix,” said Indians president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti. “The guy’s earned a reputation as a really good teammate, a good receiver and leads a pitching staff really well. We also believe there’s some upside with him offensively. We like his ingredients to hit and think he can be a contributing member of our major league team.”Roberto Perez will likely be Cleveland’s regular catcher, with Plawecki backing him up. The Indians are also excited about Eric Haase, who appeared in nine games for them last season.“Exactly how we split that playing time remains to be seen as we get into spring training,” Antonetti said. “But we felt this was an opportunity to acquire another major league catcher that could help absorb some of the burden in losing Yan. I anticipate that Roberto would get the bulk of the playing time. But again, we’ll have to see how things play out during the season.”Plawecki spent six weeks last season on the disabled list with a broken left hand. He threw out 23 percent (16 for 70) of potential base stealers and had two four-RBI games.The 27-year-old played at Purdue and was the Big Ten Player of the Year in 2012 before the Mets drafted him with the No. 35 overall pick.After signing Wilson Ramos, the Mets didn’t have any roster space for Plawecki, who was out of options.Antonetti said the Indians remain “very active” in trade talks as they try to replenish their roster and rebuild their bullpen.For months, there has been speculation that Cleveland will trade one of its top pitchers, ace Corey Kluber or Trevor Bauer. Antonetti made it clear that a move with one of them isn’t necessary.“Not sure I’ve ever said we felt a need to trade one of those guys,” he said on a conference call. “I’ve never felt that way. Given the quality of the players on our roster, I don’t expect teams will stop calling to express interest. When you’ve got players that other teams really like, they are pretty persistent in calling on them. And that’s not just the case for our starters, but other guys on our roster.”The Mets made another deal on Sunday, acquiring infielder J.D. Davis and minor league infielder Cody Bohanek from Houston for outfielder Ross Adolph http://www.redsfanproshop.com/authentic-cliff-pennington-jersey , infielder Luis Santana and catcher Scott Manea, all minor leaguers.Davis, 25, has hit five homers with 12 RBIs in 66 major league games with the Astros over the last two years. He won the Pacific Coast League batting title last year, hitting .342 (114-333) with Fresno. Any good team has to be "strong up the middle." That might not be the best way to describe last year’s 2B’s and SS’s, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility, either."WhiteFanposts Sections News & RumorsAnalysisPodcastsProspects & DraftGame CoverageFull ArchiveMasthead Social Marlins Players on TwitterFish Stripes on InstagramMarlins Media Members Fish Stripes Best of 2018 Marlins StoriesScheduleRosterStatsCommunity Guidelines StubHub 鉁昅iami Marlins Analysis2018 Season Review: Middle InfieldersNew,12commentsAny good team has to be “strong up the middle.” That might not be the best way to describe last year’s 2B’s and SS’s, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility, either.at 63% below average offensively. But it’s worth noting that the game total here is misleading; over those 111 games, Rivera accrued just 160 plate appearances, meaning that he was often used as just a pinch hitter. It’s so hard for players to produce without consistent playing time. Still, Rivera did come through with two walk-off hits for the Marlins this season. Your browser does not support HTML5 video.Looking ForwardBarring any injuries or trades, Marlins fans can count on seeing JT Riddle and Starlin Castro up the middle for the Fish again, with Miguel Rojas peppered around the diamond as needed. If he plays the whole year, 2019 will be JT Riddle’s last year of total team control; Spotrac and Baseball-Reference both have him qualifying for arbitration as a Super-Two in 2020. Given the injury trouble and the lack of offensive production, Riddle shouldn’t see a substantial raise over the league minimum in 2019. 2019 will also be Starlin Castro’s last guaranteed year on his seven-year contract. The Cubs built into that contract a club option for 2020 Matt Harvey Jersey , but given that the Marlins will likely be calling up and acculturating their new wave of prospects then, it’s hard to say with confidence that the option will be picked up. Castro will have to prove his value in 2019 to earn the $16 million paycheck; otherwise, he’ll have to test the free agent market. Miguel Rojas will be an Arb-2 player in 2019. While he earned just over a milly last year, he should get a decent raise in 2019. Brock Holt, another super-utility, earned $2.25 million in his Arb-2 year in 2018. On the other hand, shortstops Jordy Mercer and Jose Iglesias had very comparable seasons to that of Rojas before earning Arb-2 salaries over $4 million in 2017. If Rojas’ agents can convince an arbiter that he is primarily a shortstop (which shouldn’t be hard to do, given his defensive prowess there), Rojas can find his way into a relatively substantial bonus for 2019. Miguel Rojas Arb-2 CompsPlayerPlatform YearPY GPY PAPY AVGPY OBPPY SLGPY wOBAPY 2BPY HRPY SBPY OFFPY DEFPY fWARArb-2 SalaryPlayerPlatform YearPY GPY PAPY AVGPY OBPPY SLGPY wOBAPY 2BPY HRPY SBPY OFFPY DEFPY fWARArb-2 SalaryPY=Platform YearThe fourth middle infielder position is very much in the air right now. Yadiel Rivera will have to show some pop in Spring Training if he wants to spend his nights on Miami Beach instead of Bourbon Street. Three names threaten his job security.Deven Marrero and Dixon Machado are two veteran utility-men who were extended minor league contracts with spring training invites. Both players accrued just under 0 fWAR in 2018 in a little under half a season’s worth of games. Machado has the slight advantage as far as most-recent performances go, but overall, there is nothing to get excited about here. Both of these players will need to catch a second wind if they want to occupy meaningful posts for the Fish.On the contrary, Isan Diaz is a name you should get excited about. The second biggest incoming name in the Christian Yelich trade, Diaz projects to take over at second base after Starlin Castro’s contract is up. Prospects Live compares Diaz to Marlins Legend Dan Uggla, predicting him to be a “three-true outcomes, bat-first keystone player” with a high floor and a ceiling as high as his K rate will allow it. Right now, Fangraphs places him as the best prospect in the system, while Prospects Live has him at third Scott Schebler Jersey , Baseball Prospectus ranks him at fourth and Baseball America moves him down to eighth. After tearing up Double-A in 83 games with the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp, Diaz didn’t exactly make the jump to Triple-A; as a Baby Cake, he posted an OBP/SLG/wOBA of .281/.358/.285. With that said, the 22 year-old has showed signs or promise in the Puerto Rican Winter League, where over 24 games, he has accrued a weighty AVG/OBP/SLG/OPS slash of .301/.362/.422/.783. Look for the Marlins to take their time with Diaz in Triple-A and let Rivera, Marrero, and Machado duke it out for the fourth spot, until Diaz becomes ready to learn the Jedi Way from Starlin Castro in The Bigs.There always seems to be room for improvement in the middle infield. Next season is no exception; everyone has something to prove. It’s not too late for Starlin Castro to step up as a leader on the field and in the dugout. It’s not too late for JT Riddle to live up to his prospect hype and become a solid, all-around shortstop. And it’s not too late for Miguel Rojas to prove his worth as a full-season, everyday position player a la Javy Baez. If these players want to be included in the future of this club, it starts next season. They will have to overcome the struggle of platooning and getting inconsistent at-bats to show that they are worthy of permanent roles with the Marlins.Statistics and information courtesy of Fangraphs.com, Baseball-Reference.com, Baseballprospectus.com, and Spotrac.com.
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