Joe Mauer’s transition to first base leaves an All-Star-sized hole behind the plate. Who will replace him next year?
(.247, 14 HR, 55 RBI in 135 G)
Caught 43 games until a concussion of his own limited him to DH/RF; good power, but he’ll be 33 in April and four years removed from being a full-time catcher.
(.204, 4 HR, 18 RBI in 57 G)
Another multi- position player, Twins love his athleticism and throwing arm at the position. But he’s never hit better than .227 above Class AA.
(.342, 4 HR, 12 RBI in 21 G)
He’s only 24, and his footwork and pitch-calling need significant improvement. But he’s a big-league hitter, as he proved during impressive September callup.
(.385, 1 HR, 4 RBI in 6 G)
At 28, he’s a long shot for anything but backup work, especially since he hasn’t batted above .215 in past three years in minors.
Headliners such as Brian McCann, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Carlos Ruiz are too expensive, but veterans like John Buck or Kurt Suzuki might be worth considering. Or perhaps someone like Dioner Navarro or Kelly Shoppach would be interested in mentoring Pinto and playing part-time. One other name to consider, just for the fun of it: A.J. Pierzynski.