Could Bucs double-up on d’Arnauds?
Could the Pirates’ search for catching help lead to a reunion of the Brothers d’Arnaud?
Yes, but only if the Bucs decide that Michael McKenry has the stuff to be their primary receiver in 2013, leaving them shopping for a back-up. Then they could make a move for Travis d’Arnaud, one of three catchers the Blue Jays are willing to deal in the aftermath of the 12-player blockbuster with the Marlins, in which one of their acquisitions was John Buck.
Besides Buck, who could be flipped, and d’Arnaud, Toronto is also listening on incumbent starter J.P. Arencibia.
d’Arnaud of course is the younger brother of Chase d’Arnaud, and considered a hotter prospect. Pittsburgh’s d’Arnaud beat kid bro to the Majors — he appeared in 54 games with the Bucs in 2011-12 — but Travis is ranked by many evaluators among the game’s top 20 prospects.
Travis was the No. 1 Draft choice in 2007 of the Phillies, who dealt him to Toronto in the December 2009 move for Roy Halladay. He has begun to live up to that potential the last two seasons, totaling 37 homers and 130 RBIs while hitting well over .300 in 180 games on the Double-A and Triple-A levels.
Last season, his first in Triple-A, d’Arnaud hit .333 for Las Vegas, with 16 homers and 52 RBIs in 67 games.
Yeah but, you ask, how’s his arm? The Bucs need a gun behind the plate, especially from someone who would come in as a reserve and occasional late-game sub?
Answer: Not bad. He has consistently thrown out one of every four baserunners, about average, and last season threw 12-of-40, or 30 percent.