The Giants have re-signed backup catcher Nick Hundley to a one-year contract, bringing back the well-liked clubhouse presence and provider of occasional pop off the bench.
We’ve been expecting this for a long time, so I’m not sure why I’m already out of things to say, but that pretty much covers it.
Hundley is respected by his teammates, so much so that he was the Willie Mac Award winner last year. He’s right-handed. He hit nine home runs last year. He knows the pitching staff, which is going to be mostly unchanged. He already knows the wifi password in the clubhouse. His $2.5 million salary isn’t much different from the $2 million he earned last year, so this was expected.
After a miserable start to last season, Hundley rebounded to finish with a .691 OPS, which isn’t bad at all for a backup catcher who plays half his games at AT&T Park. His .272 on-base percentage left something to be desired, and he had a career worst walk rate and strikeout rate, which isn’t the best sign, but he still did just about everything that could have been expected from a backup catcher.
Let’s take a spin around the do’s and don’ts of this deal.
Do get happy that the Giants will be have a backup catcher who is better than the backup catcher on most teams in baseball.
Don’t be that person who clamors for Hundley to start and Posey to move to first. I have no idea what is wrong with those people, but they need to stop.
Do wonder just a teensy bit about how this affects the Giants’ ability to stay under the luxury tax. If this is the difference between them getting Andrew McCutchen or Justin Ruggiano, I’m not sure about the grab-a-pricey-backup-catcher-first strategy. This is $2 million more than they would have paid Trevor Brown, and we’ll have to see if that makes a difference for the rest of the offseason.
Don’t expect anything more from Hundley than what he gave the Giants last year. He’ll be 34 next year, and there really isn’t any reason to expect an improvement, but that’s fine. Another year of occasional thump and solid catcher-y things would be a plus.
Do tweet things like, “UGH, when are the Giants going to make a real move this offseason WAKE UP, BOBBY” to every single beat writer and hope they respond. They enjoy reading opinions from passionate fans. Tweet it a few times, just to make sure they see it.
Nick Hundley is back, and that’s probably a good thing. This concludes the offseason. Thanks, everyone! See you in March!