D-backs Add More Catching With Trahan





PHOENIX—While doing the requisite homework before signing Miguel Montero to a long-term contract extension last week, general manager Kevin Towers saw first-hand how thin the catching market was at all levels. It played a factor in the Diamondbacks' 2012 draft, when they took Stryker Trahan with their first pick.

"The only way you are going to get (catching) is to be able to take it in the in draft, and we felt Trahan was one of the top two catchers in the country," Towers said after the D-backs took Trahan with the 26th pick in the first round.

Trahan hit .407 with six home runs, 30 RBIs and 22 stolen bases at Lafayette (La.) Acadiana High this season. He also played quarterback and linebacker on the football team, and the D-backs liked the athleticism he showed in both sports.

"The offensive profile for behind the dish is certainly a tough commodity to find. We feel he has a chance to be an impactful offensive player. He can run. He can throw. With the bat profiling where it is and the position that he plays and the fact that he hits lefthanded, it's a pretty good package," D-backs scouting director Ray Montgomery said.

"When you cross over sports, you get a sense of what a guy is able to do. He was a leader on the football field."

Trahan has committed to Mississippi, but the D-backs believe they will be able to sign him based on conversations with the Trahan camp. Some scouts have said that they believe Trahan will eventually land at a corner outfield spot, but the D-backs see him as a catcher first.

"First of all, he's strong," Montgomery said. "Physically he's mature. He's not your typical high school player where you are going to have to battle the physical aspect of it. He is a strong, powerfully compact built kid. I think that helps. The swing itself is pretty pure. It has a chance to be above-average for sure. I think there is power to come.

"The fact that he is athletic enough (he) could play another position, whether it be left field, speaks to his athleticism."

Trahan's unusual first name comes from a TV character played by Burt Reynolds, B. L. Stryker, who was a private detective who lived on a boat in south Florida in a series that had a short run in 1989-90.

Snake Bites

• High Class A Visalia lefthander Andrew Chafin, a sandwich pick in the 2011 draft, led the California League with 82 strikeouts when the 2012 draft began June 4. "He is some kind of competitor," Montgomery said of Chafin, who was 3-1, 3.57.

• Double-A Mobile righthander Evan Marshall, selected in the fourth round in 2011, led the BayBears with 11 saves and a 2.21 ERA. Marshall attended Kansas State, where he was not the primary closer.