Victor Martinez, John Buck, A.J. Pierzynski, Miguel Olivo and Yorvit Torrealba have all agreed to multiyear deals this offseason and the pool of available free agent catchers figures to shrink a little more if Henry Blanco works out a deal with Arizona, Matt Treanor returns to Texas and Russell Martin signs with one of his AL East suitors. Here's a look at which teams could use catching depth and where they might find it:
Teams with potential interest in catching depth:
- Baltimore – The Orioles have Matt Wieters, but could look to upgrade over Jake Fox and Craig Tatum.
- St. Louis – The Cardinals are looking for a backup catcher and they consider Gregg Zaun a fallback option.
- Milwaukee – The Brewers could add a backstop to compete with Jonathan Lucroy, George Kottaras, Mike Rivera and Wil Nieves.
- Los Angeles – A.J. Ellis was a serviceable backup last year, so the Dodgers' need for catching is mild.
- San Diego – The Padres are looking for someone to back up Nick Hundley. Something tells me that Luis Martinez won't still be the only other catcher on the team's 40-man roster this spring.
- Colorado – Now that Olivo's back in Seattle, the Rockies may look to find a new complement to Chris Iannetta.
- Diamondbacks – If their discussions with Blanco fall through, they could be looking for depth.
Catchers on the free agent market:
- Josh Bard
- Gerald Laird
- Bengie Molina
- Gregg Zaun
- Henry Blanco, Russell Martin and Matt Treanor are all free agents, but are reportedly nearing deals.
Potential trade targets:
- The Pirates appear willing to part with Ryan Doumit.
- It wouldn't be shocking to see the Angels trade Jeff Mathis or Mike Napoli.
- The Yankees (Francisco Cervelli) or Red Sox (Jarrod Saltalamacchia) would have surplus catching if they sign Martin.
At least seven teams could be in the market for a backup catcher and there are not that many viable options on the free agent market, so teams with catching depth will likely draw interest in their extra backstops this winter.