|The Indians shipped power-hitting catcher Kelly Shoppach to the Rays for a player to be named, who must be identified by Dec. 20. Rookie receivers Carlos Santana and Lou Marson now have a clear path to playing time in Cleveland.
Shoppach is a quality receiver, but power is his calling card. While his playing time has been diminished a bit by playing on the same team with Victor Martinez for four years, he’s made the most of that time. In that 2006-09 period, just five catchers (minimum 1,000 plate appearances) have logged a higher slugging percentage than has Shoppach (.456). And just two—Mike Napoli and Brian McCann—have hit for more isolated power than has Shoppach (.211). Of course, with that power comes lots and lots of strikeouts. Shoppach ranks fifth with 335 whiffs, despite having the fewest PAs in the 31-catcher sample.
UPDATE: The Indians acquired righthander Mitch Talbot to complete the deal (Dec. 21).
|Mitch Talbot, rhp
Born: Oct. 17, 1983 in Cedar City, Utah.
Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 200. Bats: R. Throws: R.
School: Canyon View HS, Cedar City, Utah.
Career Transactions: Selected by Astros in second round of 2002 draft; signed Aug. 20, 2002 … Traded by Astros with SS Ben Zobrist to Devil Rays for 3B Aubrey Huff, July 12, 2006.
The Rays had no room for Talbot, whom they acquired along with a much
|Kelly Shoppach, c
Age: 29. Bats: R. Remaining Commitment: 2 arbitration-eligible years remaining until free agency ($1.95 million in ’09).
Contract details courtesy of Cot’s Baseball Contracts.