The Marlins announced Wednesday morning that they’ve placed catcher Jorge Alfaro on the 10-day injured list due to a left hamstring strain and selected the contract of veteran Sandy Leon to take his spot on the roster. Miami had an open spot on its 40-man roster already.
Alfaro, 27, has gotten out to a slow start this year, slashing .229/.250/.257 with a dozen strikeouts against just one walk in 36 trips to the plate. He was removed from last night’s game against the Orioles after beating out an infield single. Chad Wallach replaced Alfaro last night, and he’ll now share time behind the dish in Miami with Leon while Alfaro mends.
Leon, 32, has seen Major League time in parts of nine seasons but has never provided much with the bat aside from what looks to be an anomalous 2016 campaign in Boston. The veteran switch-hitter posted an out-of-the-blue .310/.369/.476 slash with a career-best seven homers in 283 plate appearances that year, but Leon has mustered just a .194/.263/.306 line in 861 trips to the plate since that time. He spent the 2020 season with the Indians organization, hitting .136/.296/.242 in 81 plate appearances.
Leon may not be much of a hitter, but he’s a well-regarded pitch framer with a career 34 percent caught-stealing rate that is well above the league average. His throwing has deteriorated in recent years, including just a 2-for-11 effort in thwarting thieves last year, but Leon is regarded as a sound defensive backstop on the whole. The Marlins have yet to provide any kind of timeline for Alfaro’s injury, so it’s unclear just how long of a window Leon will have in Miami.