Aramis Garcia has taken over as Oakland A’s backup catcher
By David Hill
The Oakland A’s did not have many open spots on the roster when they came into spring training. There were a few bullpen slots available, but the bullpen is often nebulous at the start of the season anyway. A bench option or two may be open, but that is just a matter of filling out the A’s roster.
The most interesting battle may have been for the backup catcher role. Austin Allen has been known for his solid bat and intriguing power as a minor leaguer, while Aramis Garcia has been a similar player. It was a battle that had been expected to last for most of spring training.
Aramis Garcia should be Oakland A’s backup catcher
Both players are making a case at the plate. Allen has posted a .982 OPS in his 20 plate appearances, hitting a home run and three doubles. Garcia, meanwhile, has a .892 OPS in his 19 plate appearances, hitting two doubles. Both have certainly done what they can from an offensive standpoint.
More from White Cleat Beat
- Zach Logue yet another disappointing Oakland A’s trade return
- Luis Barrera heading to familiar foe in Los Angeles Angels
- Looking back at Ruben Sierra with the Oakland A’s
- San Francisco Giants showing Oakland A’s offseason could be worse
- Lucas Luetge what Oakland A’s need in bullpen
However, the job should go to Garcia. While Allen may have more power, Garcia has performed well against a similar level of opposition. However, Garcia has been better defensively, with manager Bob Melvin praising his throwing arm and stating how much the pitchers enjoy throwing to him.
That is a bit of a surprise. While Garcia is considered a decent defensive backstop with a solid arm, he is not someone that anyone would confuse as a Gold Glove candidate. Likewise, he had not been considered the type of catcher that would have pitchers clamoring to have him behind the plate nor a manager singing his defensive praises.
A key part of being a backup catcher involves developing a strong rapport with the pitching staff. He needs to be able to handle any pitcher at any point in time, generating a comfort that may not be there with a sporadically used player. Garcia has done just that.
The Oakland A’s have found their backup catcher for Opening Day in 2021. That job should belong to Aramis Garcia.