Lost in the shuffle of the Elvis Andrus for Khris Davis swap was the fact that the Oakland A’s actually acquired another player. Catcher Aramis Garcia came over from Texas as well, essentially taking the place of Jonah Heim in the A’s pecking order.
Presumably, the 28 year old Garcia will battle with Austin Allen to be the A’s primary backup catcher in a situation that could be fluid throughout the year. He does not have an extensive track record in the majors, having produced a .229/.270/.419 batting line in 111 plate appearances, but has hit six homers despite striking out 52 times.
What does Aramis Garcia bring to the Oakland A’s?
Originally a second round draft choice by the Giants, Garcia was selected off of waivers by the Rangers at the end of November. He had missed the entire 2020 campaign due to a torn hip labrum, undergoing surgery in February. Based on the timetable, he should be completely healthy for spring training.
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Garcia has been viewed at as a decent defensive catcher, but not one that would ever be a Gold Glove candidate. He has a respectable arm, throwing out 33% of would be base stealers in the minors and 29% in the majors. There is also a degree of defensive flexibility, as he has spent time at first base as well.
On the offensive side, Garcia’s best attribute is his raw power. He hit 63 homers and 99 doubles in his 1920 minor league plate appearances, showcasing that potential. However, he also has a lot of swing and miss in his game, making it questionable as to whether or not he will ever hit enough to truly tap into that power.
As he has an option left, the A’s do not have to keep him in the majors for the upcoming season. If Allen is able to win the position in spring training, Garcia can be stashed at AAA in case he is needed. Considering his overall profile, he is the type of player that could be useful in the right spots.
Aramis Garcia may never be a starting catcher, but he does have some intrigue in his own right. If nothing else, he adds more depth at the position for the Oakland A’s.