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Giants Spring Training Preview: Catchers

PHOENIX, AZ - JUNE 29: Catcher Buster Posey #28 of the San Francisco Giants in action during the MLB game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on June 29, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - JUNE 29: Catcher Buster Posey #28 of the San Francisco Giants in action during the MLB game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on June 29, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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San Francisco Giants Buster Posey
PHOENIX, AZ – JUNE 29: Catcher Buster Posey #28 of the San Francisco Giants in action during the MLB game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on June 29, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Coming in to Spring Training, the Giants are really only set at one position: catcher. Buster Posey will return from a lengthy absence and seems to be right on schedule recovering from his hip procedure, which sets him up to be able to start behind the dish on Opening Day.

New President of Baseball Operation Farhan Zaidi has used most of this offseason to add depth to the previously thin roster, prioritizing positional versatility and upside rather than pedigree. This meant Nick Hundley, a relatively one dimensional offense-first catcher was not given a contract and has recently crossed the Bay, and the Giants will miss his veteran leadership and overall clubhouse presence.

Therefore, given Posey’s health issues last year, one would think that the catching position was a weak point for the 2018 squad. However,  as a collective unit, Giants’ catchers combined to have a .270/322/.427 slash line, which is over 100 points higher than that of all MLB catchers last season (.216/.281/.333).

For a comparison, Joe Panik has a career .277/.338/.395 slash line. Essentially, the Giants had Joe Panik with a little more pop in 2018, which isn’t too bad!

This can be attributed to the Giants employing arguably the best hitting catcher in Posey; however, with Nick Hundley, who had almost 40% of the catchers’ plate appearances out of the picture now, who can step up and fill the void? Will it be an offseason signing, a current Giants prospect, or a complete unknown?

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