12 November 2009
After picking up Victor Martinez' $7.1M option for next season, Theo Epstein said that the Red Sox plan on using V-Mart as the everyday catcher, so it will be interseting to see how often Varitek catches next season and which starters he will be teamed up with.
We know Josh Beckett respects Martinez, but prefers Varitek. And Tek is probably the best option for Daisuke Matsuzaka due to the language barrier and the established relationship. But V-Mart will be Clay Buchholz' battery mate, and probably Jon Lester's as well. Both catchers have proven they can handle the knuckleball, so it remains unclear who will catch Wakefield once he's healthy. Most likely it will be Martinez, simply because the Red Sox need his bat in the lineup as much as possible.
Assuming the above holds true, Tek will catch two of the five starters, giving him 50-60 starts or 250 at-bats. That leaves Martinez with approximately 90 starts at catcher or around 350 at-bats. Please note that these are very rough numbers... just roll with me on this.
Using those "rough numbers," Bill James' early predictions for 2010 and my own genius... I've guesstimated what we can expect from the catching position in 2010 and compared it to what the Yankees got out of Posada and Molina in 2009.
Bottom Line: Tek and V-Mart won't tally 600 total ABs at catcher, but even if you shave off 50-80 at-bats, the Sox should get the same amount of production from the position as the Yankees in 2010.
I thought having Varitek log 250 at-bats would hurt us, but looking at the details, it looks like V-Mart will be able to dampen Tek's negative affect on the offense and give us solid numbers at catcher in 2010.
Youk and Bay could be our anti-Teixeria and anti-Holliday (if he joins NYY), but we need an Anti-Arod and an Anti-Jeter if we want to take down the Yankees...
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