Cubs Catch Montero, Kemp On the Move?

According to various sources, the Chicago Cubs have acquired catcher Miguel Montero from the Arizona Diamondbacks. Nice move by the Cubs, who missed out on signing Russell Martin. Though the 30-year-old’s OBP and power numbers have reduced drastically over the past two years, Montero should provide similar production to Martin, both at and behind the plate. I’ve always liked Montero’s catching skills; he receives pitches well, has good feet, and an above-average arm. His bugaboo is lefthanded pitchers, but, if the Cubs hold on to RH-hitting Welington Castillo, the two could combine for a productive platoon — Castillo crushed lefties last year.

Did you think the headline referred to the Mets trading Rafael Montero?

Also, the Dodgers have swapped backstop Drew Butera to the Angels. The Dodgers recently picked up Ryan Lavarnway from the waiver wire, making the defensive-minded Butera expendable.

Additionally, the Pirates have reportedly re-signed starting pitcher Francisco Liriano to a three-year, $39M contract.

Finally, there is buzz that the Padres could be close to acquiring Matt Kemp from the Dodgers.

That’s all for now from the winter meetings.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. argonbunnies December 9, 2014 at 9:20 pm
    Miguel Montero is a weird player, going from an elite hitter at age 28 to terrible at 29. After 250 bad games, what are his bounce-back odds entering his age 31 season? Probably not great, but also not zero. If you buy the saber folks’ valuation of pitch framing, then offense would just be a bonus — Montero ranked among the best at framing last year. The platoon idea with Welly is sharp. How much did the Cubs give up for him?

    Very curious to see what kind of price Kemp commands.