10:43am: The deal is actually for $1.5MM and also comes with $100K in available incentives, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com tweets.
10:28am: The Marlins have agreed to a one-year, $1MM deal with free agent catcher Jeff Mathis, MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro reports on Twitter. Mathis will remain in Miami, where he’s spent the past three seasons.
Mathis, who is entering his age-33 campaign, has already logged 11 big league seasons. He saw far less action last year (32 games) than he has for most of that stretch, but the Fish obviously value his presence as a reserve backstop and veteran leader.
It’s long been apparent that Mathis is a sub-par hitter, and that likely won’t change. Mathis has slashed just .184/.248/.282 in his 554 plate appearances with the Marlins, which is only marginally worse than his career batting line.
But Mathis is valued primarily for his handling of pitchers and glovework behind the dish. He’s still rated as a strong framer, for example, and is well thought of for his blocking and throwing abilities.