Three years for $13 million. Not crazy in this market, not crazy at all. The key to Catalanotto is that he is just about worthless versus lefties. He managed a great .300/.376/.439 in 432 ABs last year for Toronto, but he was savagely platooned: only 38 of those ABs were against lefties. That’s smart of John Gibbons: only about 10% of Cat’s ABs in the last six years have been against southpaws, and he’s scratched out a .243/.327/.346 line vs. LHP in that time.
With those splits, Catalanotto would be a nice platoon partner for Nelson Cruz, but that still leaves the Rangers two outfielders short. Brian Anderson would be a nice fit in center, but that still leaves the outfield rather thin; a recovered Brad Wilkerson, Victor Diaz, and Freddy Guzman are other in-house options. Only Wilkerson even has a shot at providing league-average offense, and that assume his skills come back with his health. Then again, if any team can manage a weak offensive outfield, it’s the one with Mark Teixiera, Hank Blalock, and Michael Young in the infield.
By Jeff Sackmann