Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Catcher talk

Dejan Kovacevic explains the Pirates will bid on Johnny Estrada.

There's a lot of talk in that article about his hitting, but I want to know if he can catch the ball. For example, if someone throws the ball from the outfield to Johnny Estrada, while guys are running around the bases, will Estrada catch the ball? Also, there are other times when the catcher needs to catch the ball. If Estrada won't catch the ball, I don't see how he could be an upgrade over Ronny Ballgame.

I also wonder if Estrada is adept at reading signs communicated from the dugout. Because while I'd prefer to see him start (if he will catch the ball), there's no sense abandoning the advantage of Ronny's Paul Lo Duca-like feel for things that instantaneously pop up during an at-bat and his definitive understanding of how to carry out an at-bat. So if Estrada is good with Paulino calling the game from the dugout, things could work out--so long, of course, as Ronny could keep that feel for the at-bat while not behind the plate trying to catch the ball.

On one hand, I could see how it would be hard to focus and get a feel for things popping up if you are in the dugout. On the other hand, I could see how it might free the mind from distractions if you are not trying to catch the ball. So it would be an experiment.

No comments:

Post a Comment