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J.P. Arencibia

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#1 iastfan112

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 03:54 AM

Convince me why signing him as the 2nd catcher would be a bad idea. Was terrible offensively last year but the previous 2 years were decent from a catcher. Right around the league average for % thrown out and was well above average in pitch framing last year.

#2 Brandon

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 06:47 AM

He looks to be the third best option of whats left of the free agent market. A slight downgrade from Navarro but has enough power to sign.

#3 Twins Daily Admin

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 07:07 AM

My general impression of him has been good, and someone pointed out that he's really good at pitch framing. I'd need to look closer at that, I guess.

But boy, does he look clueless at the plate. You would think a good catch-framer would know the value of working the count. Here are his K/BB ratios for the last three years:

2011 - 133/36 = 3.7
2012 - 108/18 = 6
2013 - 148/18 = 8.2

Wow. THAT is impressive. And you ate a whole wheel of cheese? How'd you do that? I'm not even mad. That's amazing.

#4 markos

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:23 AM

Convince me why signing him as the 2nd catcher would be a bad idea. Was terrible offensively last year but the previous 2 years were decent from a catcher. Right around the league average for % thrown out and was well above average in pitch framing last year.


I would prefer him (assuming he is reasonable cheap) backing up Pinto over a expensive, long-term deal for Saltalamacchia.

#5 whatever54

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:37 AM

With AJ off the market, and Salty being a pretty expensive option, Arencipia looks like he's worth a good look at.

#6 TKGuy

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:43 AM

So you're saying his cluelessness equals Drew Butera territory? I would take a flyer, he should be cheap and then we can turn our attention towards another starter, like Garza (in my dreams)

#7 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:44 AM

My general impression of him has been good, and someone pointed out that he's really good at pitch framing. I'd need to look closer at that, I guess.

But boy, does he look clueless at the plate. You would think a good catch-framer would know the value of working the count. Here are his K/BB ratios for the last three years:

2011 - 133/36 = 3.7
2012 - 108/18 = 6
2013 - 148/18 = 8.2

Wow. THAT is impressive. And you ate a whole wheel of cheese? How'd you do that? I'm not even mad. That's amazing.


Best use of that quote that I've seen in quite some time.

#8 BigTrane

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:51 AM

What's his throwout %, exactly?
Fast moving story- was just looking at his offensive numbers compared with AJ and didn't see the upside- except being cheap and young. He brings nothing to the plate.
Feel free to pile on about Suzuki.

#9 pierre75275

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:52 AM

With a career .207 average and .193 last year I doubt that will improve much. Yes he does have good power but I am not confinced that will play all that well at Target Field. I would rather they let Pinto take his lumps. Or get "salty" even tho I think he will get paid more then he is worth

#10 Thrylos

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:52 AM

Convince me why signing him as the 2nd catcher would be a bad idea. Was terrible offensively last year but the previous 2 years were decent from a catcher. Right around the league average for % thrown out and was well above average in pitch framing last year.



Herrmann is potentially better with the stick, is more versatile, has more upside, as a LHB provides complement to Pinto, and was the Twins' organization best defensive catcher according to BA.
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#11 mike wants wins

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 08:58 AM

He's awful at his job. I don't understand why people are so afraid of giving a rookie a shot. Unless you think they'll compete next year, in which case you go sign a good catcher, not an awful one.
Lighten up Francis....

#12 iastfan112

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:00 AM

What's his throwout %, exactly?
Fast moving story- was just looking at his offensive numbers compared with AJ and didn't see the upside- except being cheap and young. He brings nothing to the plate.


Mid to upper 20% range, right around league average. If you suspect last year was an anomaly he put up a couple seasons of .700 OPS which is respectable for a catcher. The other advantage he has over some of the other options is that unlike an AJ or Salty you he'd probably sign as backup/given chance to win the job out of ST, letting the team see if Pinto has a future here.

Edited by iastfan112, 03 December 2013 - 09:05 AM.


#13 BigTrane

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:24 AM

Ok, thanks for the info!

If you suspect he's OK at the plate and no disadvantage behind it- and cheap to boot- then he's worth a look. Not like there's a lot of options now. AJ signed with Boston.
Salty was offered 2 years, but turned it down (what I gather)- he wants 3 or 4. So for me, short term + a guy willing to platoon some is a big plus. That ain't Salty.

What about the "intangibles" like working with pitchers, framing pitches, etc?
Feel free to pile on about Suzuki.

#14 cmathewson

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:30 AM

Pass. The Blue Jays signed the fourth best catcher on the FA market so they could trade a guy with a 59 OPS+ with questionable defensive skills. He's not even worth a 40-man roster spot, which is why Toronto is trying to trade him. Fryer is a better option.
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#15 TheLeviathan

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:31 AM

He's awful at his job. I don't understand why people are so afraid of giving a rookie a shot. Unless you think they'll compete next year, in which case you go sign a good catcher, not an awful one.


My problem is with plan B. We heard the same about Hicks and you can recall the disaster that was our CF situation last year I'm sure.

#16 beckmt

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:31 AM

Do not see signing him as a bad move. Pinto needs a mentor for training in the art of catching.

#17 johnnydakota

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:35 AM

For Cheap and usable , Me thinks it was Baltimore who got that piece in Johnny Monell,
Left handed catcher with decent defensive numbers and power , yes a tad old for a minor leaque catcher, but look who was blocking him....

#18 Siehbiscuit

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 09:35 AM

If the Twins sign a catcher that is that terrible offensively, then it better be for a superior defensive catcher a la one of the Molina Bros. This guy isnt even in Butera's league defensively and is similar with the bat. No thanks.

#19 Dance with Disco Dan

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 10:04 AM

Don't be seduced by the HRs and selected defensive stats. Least season, Arencibia was an offensive blackhole of epic proportions. As mentioned above, his OPS+ was 59 with 100 denoting league average. Mauer had a terrific year and booked a 144 OPS +. So, basically, Arencibia was worse than the average catcher at about the same magnitude that Mauer was better.

His terrible .227 OBP was well earned as he only managed 18 walks in 497 PAs. Delmon Young heard about that and said, "J.P. needs to work the count."

In a recent piece, Keith Law described him as a below-average defensive catcher which, if accurate, means he is not going to save runs with his glove.

The only way adding J.P. is acceptable is if he is cut by Toronto and picked off the scrap heap. Even then, my abiding hope is that the Twins forget he exists and run with what they have or pursue other options.

Edited by Dance with Disco Dan, 03 December 2013 - 10:08 AM.


#20 tmerrickkeller

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 10:09 AM

I agree with those who are coming to the conclusions that there are not very many outside options for the Twins at this point. Salty wants too many years and is not that highly-rated defensively (though this team will need to score more runs in order to compete); the remainder are in the mode of either Doumit (no D, reasonable O) or Butera (no O, reasonable D).

Signing any new catcher to be a primary option also blocks Pinto, and I think he deserves a shot to be a regular. We have either Hermann or Fryer, and it is not unreasonable to think that between Pinto and Hermann/Fryer we could cover the vast majority of games, and leave Doumit to DH regularly. Any regular watcher of the Twins will note that Doumit improves substantially with consistent at-bats.

It also appears (every year) that there are catchers available at the end of spring training if we desperately need to plug a hole. This isn't the highest priority for this team right now, and the options outside the organization do not mandate immediate action.

#21 Thrylos

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 10:16 AM

Speaking of his power and lack of contact, his numbers really remind me of those of a certain catcher who went .191/.252/.389 with 16 HRs in a particular special Twins' team... Drew's dad was his backup.

I'd so pass.
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#22 nicksaviking

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 10:21 AM

If he's strictly a backup, sure, but I don't think Pinto could purposly hit as poorly as Arencibia did last year. Even if Pinto disappoints, I doubt he disappoints to that level. You only get a Hicksonian level of offensive confusion a couple times a decade, I don't think the Twins should go out of their way to find it again.

The HR are sexy, but I don't even want to platoon a guy who has a career .258 OBP.

#23 Craig in MN

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 10:31 AM

People are seriously underrating Arencibia based on his low AVG and poor year last year. He's not Drew Butera. Butera has a sub .500 OPS and has never done anything with his bat in the majors or minors. Arencibia has a very good minor league track record, and 2 good offensive years in the majors, followed by one bad year (with a very poor/unlucky BABIP). It makes no sense to complain about a 59 OPS+ while ignore his previous two years and ignoring that Hermann and Fryer (who are basically the same age) weren't doing well enough in the minors to earn notable MLB playing time at all.


Arencibia's never going to be even a decent AVG guy, and he's never going to be an all star, but he averages 20 HRs a year and can be a decent catcher, and he's got MLB experience. Fryer or Hermann or Pinto have no experience, and I'm not opposed to giving them experience, but make them earn it and maybe share time with someone who does. I don't think makes sense to invest much in bringing in a catcher, but Arrencibia seems like about the right combination of cost and potential.

The more I think about it, I think he's basically Trevor Plouffe, only at catcher. Arencibia is a little better defensively, and little lower average, but a good power potential, and good enough to give a chance too, until he gets expensive or a hot prospect forces him to the side.

Edited by Craig in MN, 03 December 2013 - 10:56 AM.


#24 mike wants wins

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 11:20 AM

"earn it" meaning what? Being good in the minors, and great in his audtion, or something else? I worry that signing a guy like him makes him the starter, and Pinto the backup, at least with this organization. As for "plan B"....it doesn't matter if your starting CF is Pressly, your starting 3B is Plouffe, your DH is Doumit, and your SS is Floriman. That offense isn't competing w/o some changes. This offense was awful last year, and so far all they've done is hope for a healthier Mauer and Willingham.

IF you sign a legit OF or DH, then maybe worry about catcher plan B. Otherwise, Pinto is plan A, with your best defensive C as plan B, and Herrman as plan C and /RF/DH/PH.
Lighten up Francis....

#25 TheLeviathan

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 11:23 AM

Buy low candidates are buy-low for a reason, but you have to look for the hints of a diamond in tht rough. He had a lot of pedigree and was hhighly thought of as recently as last ST. These kinds of moves can come at a low cost and reap high rewards.

#26 mike wants wins

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 11:24 AM

As long as Pinto gets a legit shot, I don't really care....but I think JP will continue to be bad at his job, and I'd rather they look elsewhere for help (like OF or DH).
Lighten up Francis....

#27 markos

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 11:41 AM

Interesting comparison:

From 2011-2012
Player A (25 and 26 seasons):
858 PA, .225/.279/.437, 91 OPS+, 28% K, 6% BB
Player B (26 and 27 seasons):
834 PA, .228/.288/.452, 96 OPS+, 31% K, 7% BB

Player A is Arencibia and Player B is Saltalamacchia.

Now in 2013, Saltalamacchia had a career year while Arencibia was terrible, so it does make some sense that Salty is getting a multi-year deal while Arencibia is available for peanuts.

#28 nicksaviking

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 11:50 AM

People are seriously underrating Arencibia based on his low AVG and poor year last year. He's not Drew Butera. Butera has a sub .500 OPS and has never done anything with his bat in the majors or minors. Arencibia has a very good minor league track record, and 2 good offensive years in the majors, followed by one bad year (with a very poor/unlucky BABIP). It makes no sense to complain about a 59 OPS+ while ignore his previous two years and ignoring that Hermann and Fryer (who are basically the same age) weren't doing well enough in the minors to earn notable MLB playing time at all.


Arencibia's never going to be even a decent AVG guy, and he's never going to be an all star, but he averages 20 HRs a year and can be a decent catcher, and he's got MLB experience. Fryer or Hermann or Pinto have no experience, and I'm not opposed to giving them experience, but make them earn it and maybe share time with someone who does. I don't think makes sense to invest much in bringing in a catcher, but Arrencibia seems like about the right combination of cost and potential.

The more I think about it, I think he's basically Trevor Plouffe, only at catcher. Arencibia is a little better defensively, and little lower average, but a good power potential, and good enough to give a chance too, until he gets expensive or a hot prospect forces him to the side.



Arencibia took two fewer walks than Delmon Young last year. And Young had 133 fewer plate appearances. Somehow he has managed to regress on his already terrible .285 OBP in 2011 each of the last two years. This guy just can't get on base.

#29 Thrylos

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 11:55 AM

Interesting comparison:

From 2011-2012
Player A (25 and 26 seasons):
858 PA, .225/.279/.437, 91 OPS+, 28% K, 6% BB
Player B (26 and 27 seasons):
834 PA, .228/.288/.452, 96 OPS+, 31% K, 7% BB

Player A is Arencibia and Player B is Saltalamacchia.

Now in 2013, Saltalamacchia had a career year while Arencibia was terrible, so it does make some sense that Salty is getting a multi-year deal while Arencibia is available for peanuts.


That's part of the reason I don't want the Twins near Saltalamacchia...
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#30 PseudoSABR

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 12:58 PM

Darren Wolfson ‏@DarrenWolfson 4m The #MNTwins have made preliminary contact w/ now FA catcher J.P. Arencibia, per a source. Talks haven't gone anywhere. Focus is Salty.