The Indians announced that they have signed former Mets catcher Anthony Recker to a minor league deal with an invitation to Major League Spring Training (Twitter link). Recker is a client of All Bases Covered Sports Management.
The 32-year-old Recker has logged significant time with the Mets as a backup over the past three seasons, hitting .190/.256/.350 in 432 plate appearances from 2013-15. Recker also has experience in the Majors with the Cubs and Athletics, who originally selected him in the 18th round of the 2005 draft.
Recker struggled to throw out runners in 2015, catching just one of the 11 men who attempted to steal against him, although those struggles were uncharacteristic; prior to 2015, Recker had caught 24 of 80 attempted base-stealers for a rate of 30 percent. His pitch-framing numbers, however, have come in consistently below the league average.
While Recker has been a serviceable backup for the Mets, he reached arbitration eligibility this year. The Mets, who have Travis d’Arnaud lined up to start in 2016, also have another highly touted young catcher in Kevin Plawecki and a backup alternative in Johnny Monnell — each of whom is making roughly the league minimum. As such, Recker was presumably deemed expendable. He’ll hope to win a job with the Indians this spring, although there’s a good chance he ends up serving as a valuable depth piece in Triple-A due to the fact that the Indians have a strong Major League catching tandem of Yan Gomes and Roberto Perez.