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View Full Version : The catching situation for the next couple years


chisoxfanatic
06-30-2012, 01:00 AM
Like all Sox fans, we absolutely LOVE AJ. He's been one of the best, most baseball-intelligent catchers we've ever had. With this being the last year on his contract, I thought it might be interesting to discuss what you think will happen with the catching situation over the next couple years.

I personally think AJ has another couple years in him, and I think he will re-sign with the Sox when all is said and done. I appreciate that we do have a decent back-up catcher in Tyler Flowers. I think that, while AJ's career winds down, that it might be wise for AJ and Flowers to be put into a platoon catching situation, where Flowers gradually gets more starts as AJ gets closer to retirement.

I do not want this to be AJ's last year as a Sox player, and I do not think he will be anywhere else next season.

Noneck
06-30-2012, 01:27 AM
AJ is a smart guy, he knows his next contract will be his last "big" contract. How many years that contract will be? I would think no more than 3 and probably 2. A 37 year old catcher really can't command much, maybe 12M for 2 years or 15M for 3 tops? Hes a fan favorite and that is chump change for a guy that will sell out the park late in September of 2014 or 2015 for his retirement party. And Flowers currently hasnt shown enough to be a everyday catcher and actually not even enough to platoon. AJ stays.

edit: My post is based on the Sox continuing to compete for the division this year and trying to do the same next year.

hawkjt
06-30-2012, 02:24 AM
I am not sure if because it is a contract year or what,but AJ is starting to take on that Carlton Fisk-late career new life look. I really think to this point,this is the best year that AJ has ever had as a Sox,which is saying something. I say a new two year deal with a club option is in order. He loves playing here,and will not be anxious to re-locate, I suspect.

WhiteSox5187
06-30-2012, 02:59 AM
This is an interesting dilemma that the White Sox face because AJ will be 36 next year and is obviously approaching the end of his career. I read that he changed his off season regimen because he was coming off of that wrist injury and wanted to make sure he was 100% so that might explain his power numbers (he has always hit for a high average) and while he is throwing out base runners at the highest percentage since 2003 he is struggling with balls in the dirt which I suspect is a sign of his legs wearing down a bit and age catching up to him. I would be wary of giving him a contract more than two years (and I don't think he will be able to get a contract of that length) but with Flowers' increased playing time it seems to be that it is evident to me that he is just not going to be an every day catcher. He struggles as much defensively as AJ does and does not have the excuse of age. He has the longest swing that I have ever seen and I have a hard time envisioning him ever hitting much higher than .220 with an OBP of .315. AJ is not the long term solution at catcher, but neither is Tyler Flowers.

DickAllen72
06-30-2012, 09:25 AM
Sign him to a two year contract with an option for a third. AJ should retire in a White Sox uniform and remain with the organization after his playing career is over.

Moses_Scurry
06-30-2012, 09:33 AM
Sign him to a two year contract with an option for a third. AJ should retire in a White Sox uniform and remain with the organization after his playing career is over.

100% agree, although it needs to be a team option rather than a player option.

24thStFan
06-30-2012, 10:43 AM
... I think that, while AJ's career winds down, that it might be wise for AJ and Flowers to be put into a platoon catching situation, where Flowers gradually gets more starts as AJ gets closer to retirement.

In my opinion, this is the right answer. AJ means so much to the team. The way he handles our pitchers, the way he "annoys" the opposition, and his grinder attitude are all things I would like AJ to pass on to Flowers.

Can we make AJ a "player/coach/"

BainesHOF
06-30-2012, 10:47 AM
My heart would like AJ to retire in a Sox uniform, but my head says that this should be his last season with us.

Flowers is ready to be an everyday catcher. He's good defensively and the pitchers like throwing to him. He won't hit for a high average, but he'll hit some homers. Catcher is a defensive position anyway, especially in the post-steroid era.

As far as AJ, it's so typical for a player to put out in the final year of his contract. Where was his commitment the last couple of years? If we give him another contract, I think he'll go back to being the AJ of the last couple seasons attitude-wise and his physical skills will diminish rather rapidly at his age. He's already having trouble handling some balls behind the plate.

doublem23
06-30-2012, 10:59 AM
Sign him to a two year contract with an option for a third. AJ should retire in a White Sox uniform and remain with the organization after his playing career is over.

If he's willing to give the Sox a hometown discount, I'm all for this

Tragg
06-30-2012, 11:47 AM
AJ may get some crazy contract offer based on the year he's having.

Flowers is a good catcher.

Like MB and Frank, AJ will always be a White Sox, but they can't all retire in a Sox uniform.

DickAllen72
06-30-2012, 12:25 PM
Like MB and Frank, AJ will always be a White Sox, but they can't all retire in a Sox uniform.
No, but one out of the three can. AJ should play out the rest of his career with the Sox and remain in the organization afterwards.

I always thought he'd make a good color man either on TV or radio if that's what he wants to do.

He'd probably make a good coach and a hell of a good manager some day if he wants to as well.

WhiteSox5187
06-30-2012, 12:33 PM
My heart would like AJ to retire in a Sox uniform, but my head says that this should be his last season with us.

Flowers is ready to be an everyday catcher. He's good defensively and the pitchers like throwing to him. He won't hit for a high average, but he'll hit some homers. Catcher is a defensive position anyway, especially in the post-steroid era.

As far as AJ, it's so typical for a player to put out in the final year of his contract. Where was his commitment the last couple of years? If we give him another contract, I think he'll go back to being the AJ of the last couple seasons attitude-wise and his physical skills will diminish rather rapidly at his age. He's already having trouble handling some balls behind the plate.

In my opinion Flowers is not and never will be an everyday catcher in the majors. He has the same struggles that AJ has defensively and is about ten years younger. His swing is so long that I think pitchers will be able to exploit it to where the amount of homers he hits will be negligible.

chisoxfanatic
06-30-2012, 12:42 PM
No, but one out of the three can. AJ should play out the rest of his career with the Sox and remain in the organization afterwards.

I always thought he'd make a good color man either on TV or radio if that's what he wants to do.

He'd probably make a good coach and a hell of a good manager some day if he wants to as well.
AJ and Hawk when AJ retires...I'd LOVE that!

JB98
06-30-2012, 03:25 PM
All I know is Flowers isn't a long-term answer.

thomas35forever
06-30-2012, 03:39 PM
All I know is Flowers isn't a long-term answer.

Agreed. He's shown nothing to convince me he's a everyday catcher at this level. If we go into next season with him as the regular starter, I fear for the future of that position.

soxfanreggie
06-30-2012, 11:57 PM
100% agree, although it needs to be a team option rather than a player option.

Yes, I'm for this too. I also don't think you'll see many other teams willing to go multiple years with him. His "most-hated player" status only helps us in that regards. We could always do what the Angels did and add a "Legends" aspect to a deal.

I will reiterate what I said before this season and before last season - we need to work on getting a good catching prospect in our system that would be ready around say 2013 (wasn't sure what we would do with AJ) or 2014. This needs to be one of our top focuses this off-season.

forrestg
07-01-2012, 03:40 AM
AJ and Stoney 2 people who know baseball not Hawk who just knows old stories .

fram40
07-01-2012, 09:49 AM
We could always do what the Angels did and add a "Legends" aspect to a deal.

I believe Selig has outlawed those types of deals - the personal services' aspects of player contracts. IIRC - after the Pujols deal.

soxfanreggie
07-01-2012, 12:18 PM
I believe Selig has outlawed those types of deals - the personal services' aspects of player contracts. IIRC - after the Pujols deal.

It may be against the rules to write in a contract but I bet you have a lot of clubs who mention keeping guys in the family after they're done.