Friday, October 24, 2008

Alternatives to Tek

My friend Adam earlier this week sent me a list of catchers who will be available on the free agent market this winter. One could be headed to Boston, should the Red Sox decide not to re-sign Jason Varitek. Here it is, along with their ages next season:

Brad Ausmus (40)
Paul Bako (37)
Rod Barajas (33) - $2.5MM club option for '09 with a $0.5MM buyout
Josh Bard (31)
Michael Barrett (32)
Henry Blanco (37) - $3MM mutual option for '09 with a $0.3MM buyout
Johnny Estrada (33)
Toby Hall (33) - $2.25MM club option for '09 with a $0.15MM buyout
Jason LaRue (35)
Paul Lo Duca (37)
Miguel Olivo (30) - $2.7MM mutual option for '09 with a $0.1MM buyout
Ivan Rodriguez (37)
David Ross (32)
Javier Valentin (33)
Gregg Zaun (38)

As you can see, everyone of them is over the age of 30, and most aren't full-time players any more (if they ever were). Of course, the Red Sox could always trade for a full-time catcher, but the price would be awfully steep for someone of any quality. There is one intriguing name up there: Josh Bard. The Padres made him a free agent after he had an injury-riddled 2008 season. Would the Sox correct a past mistake and bring him back?

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