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I agree 100%, I hope he stays on the team for a long, long time.

 

He got a lot of heat in the media after 2010 - Reusse in particular was threatening to drop his 4 legends club tickets on air if he is with the team the following season (he didn't drop them) and he is often the butt of on air jokes.

 

It's clear his defense is superior to Mauer, and as you pointed out he seems to have a knack for brining out the best in our pitchers and takes more risks with calling pitches. One has to wonder if some of the initial success of veteran Pavano was due to having Butera as his 'personal' catcher. And while it is still sub par, his batting is better this year - if that can only pick up a bit more.

 

This team has a lot of holes - I really don't think they should focus on getting a better swinging catcher and hope Butera is with this time for the long run when they might be competitive again.

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The problem with Butera though is that before this year he was literally one of the worst hitters in the history of baseball. If he can keep a 70+ OPS+ going, he isn't going to kill you. But if he hits like he did in 2011 .167/.210/.239 24 OPS+ (worse then several pitchers) over 250 PA (ugh) he is going to cost your team wins, no doubt about it.

 

The question is: Can he continue to hit for at least a .625-.660 OPS? If so, he's not going to kill you.

This pretty much sums up the situation. Personally, I don't think he can maintain a respectable OPS. His May numbers are inflating a really awful June where he OPSed at .476. So far so good in July... He's OPSing at .643.

 

If Son of Sal can keep it around .650, I actually have very few problems with him being on the roster. I just don't think he can do it.

 

But no matter how he hits, we need to stop artificially giving him credit for magically curing the woes of the Twins pitching staff.

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One has to wonder if some of the initial success of veteran Pavano was due to having Butera as his 'personal' catcher.

One could probably stop wondering, though, if they realized that Pavano's first half-season here was 2009 when Butera didn't appear for the Twins. And in 2010, Mauer caught 14 of Pavano's first 17 starts (Ramos caught one, also). After the first week of July, Butera started catching Pavano regularly (13 of his final 15 starts)...and Pavano's ERA stayed about the same (actually ticked up a tiny bit).

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Seth.....Butera will NEVER get credit for anything in this or any other forum. He is considered a borderline AAA player by most. What he is is almost exactly what a backup C should be, solid defensively who works well with the pitching staff and who actually is not a black hole offensively this season. What makes it better is he's a 3rd catcher.

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I'm more disturbed that everyone seems to think that having a 3rd catcher on the roster is OK.

This should only disturb you if your #1 and #2 catchers play ONLY catcher. Given that Mauer and Doumit also play elsewhere in the field, having a #3 catcher on the roster makes sense.

 

Given the continuing horrendous heat this summer, having 3 catchers makes quite a bit of sense to me. Despite improvements, that gear has to awfully hot. It really doesn't make sense to wear down 2 good hitters by constantly putting them behind the plate.

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Guest USAFChief

One could probably stop wondering, though, if they realized that Pavano's first half-season here was 2009 when Butera didn't appear for the Twins. And in 2010, Mauer caught 14 of Pavano's first 17 starts (Ramos caught one, also). After the first week of July, Butera started catching Pavano regularly (13 of his final 15 starts)...and Pavano's ERA stayed about the same (actually ticked up a tiny bit).

Personally I think Gardy started putting Butera behind the plate in Pavano's starts in an attempt to slow down opponents running games just a bit. Butera was gonna give Mauer a break once or twice a week anyway, might as well be with Pavano, who gets run on. Mauer's arm ain't in the same league as Butera.

 

It just became a routine, sorta like this year with Frankie.

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I like Butera. He plays with a lot of enthusiasm, like every game might be his last (and if he was playing for any other team, that might very well be the case).

 

Thing is, he's a minor league catcher. That's not a crime. If the Twins really need a third catcher, they could probably find a defensive specialist who hits better than Butera.

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Personally I think Gardy started putting Butera behind the plate in Pavano's starts in an attempt to slow down opponents running games just a bit. Butera was gonna give Mauer a break once or twice a week anyway, might as well be with Pavano, who gets run on. Mauer's arm ain't in the same league as Butera.

 

It just became a routine, sorta like this year with Frankie.

Agree with the routine part. I don't follow other teams closely enough to know if they follow the same pattern, but it's long been a Twins move to have the #1 catcher get days off regularly by having the backup associated with a certain pitcher. Way back to Ortiz catching Scott Erickson I remember that happening. I don't know if it's true, but I always felt like it was often the "best" pitcher that got the offensively-less-adept catcher with the thinking that the better pitcher would need less run support.

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