Brewers designate George Kottaras for assignment


The Brewers designated backup catcher Gorge Kottaras today, clearing room on the roster for starter Jonathan Lucroy as he comes off the DL. Martin Maldonado played well enough in Lucroy’s absence to assume the backup job long-term.

The 29-year-old Kottaras posted a 122 wRC+ in 116 plate appearances for Milwaukee this year thanks to his gaudy 20.7% walk rate (!). I wrote more about him in a Scouting The Market piece earlier this month, so check that out for a full breakdown. The Yankees have the best record in baseball and therefore the lowest waiver priority, so they’re unlikely to get a chance to claim him. If they want Kottaras — and they should since he’s an upgrade over Chris Stewart and a left-handed hitter they could platoon with Russell Martin — they’ll have to swing a trade.

Categories : Asides, Trade Deadline


  1. Mike, what do you think it would take to get a guy like him? and How exactly does it work, if a team claims him before the Yankees can swing a trade, to the Brewers have to give him to the claiming team immediately, or can they try to swing a deal for him first? I’ve never really been clear on that.

  2. RI$P FTW says:

    Go for it, Hammer!

  3. MikedJones says:

    Let’s trade for him and put him at third. Once arod comes back he can move to rf and Swisher can catch.

  4. viridiana says:

    Off topic, but any word on Mason Williams? Hopefully, not hurt bad.

  5. viridiana says:

    What I figured…

  6. Brian S. says:

    I didn’t see any data on him in Mike Fast’s pitch framing article so we won’t know if Cashman is interested in him or not.

  7. Steve (different one) says:

    Isn’t a large part of his OBP a function of hitting ahead of the pitcher?? Not saying he doesn’t have decent On base skills, but I would feel pretty confident that he doesn’t sniff a 122 RC+ in the AL.

    How is his defense? If its good, he’s an upgrade. If it isnt, then it gets murkier.

    • Mike Axisa says:

      Career walk rate: 13.8%
      Walk rate hitting eighth: 13.9%
      Walk rate in every other lineup spot: 13.7%

      So … no. I mean, he’s not going to walk in 20% of his PA like this year, but a LHB with some pop and discipline? Sign me up.

      • Steve (different one) says:

        Thanks Mike, I think we agree. I was more asking about the .400 OBP this year, and he has a .481 from the 8th spot. His OBP is still good in other spots, I was just wondering why his OBP was so high. Catchers with .400 OBP’s just don’t get DFA’ed.

        • Short Porch says:

          Allow me to suggest that since Kottaras became Randy Wolfe’s personal catcher, and since Randy Wolfe has a slash line of .133/.129/.133/.266, the pitcher thought ‘maybe I should walk this guy and deal with the stiff.’

          I am still not completely clear how you can have your OBP less than your BA, but that’s what ESPN showed.

    • Need Pitching (and maybe hitting too) says:

      Good point, and I’m sure he wouldn’t sniff a 122 wRC+ with the Yankees, but looking at his career numbers, it seems he should be able to manage at least an 8-10 BB%. He also has a little bit of power (compared to Stewart, anyways, career .181 ISO) It seems he’s probably at least a bit worse than Stewart defensively, but he wouldn’t have to do much with the bat to make up for it, considering Stewart’s 2.9 BB%, .041 ISO, and 45 wRC+.

  8. Murderers' Row Boat says:

    I don’t understand the urge to trade up to a better hitting catcher. If the Yankees cared about a hitting catcher over a fielding catcher, Jesus Montero would still be a Yankee. They prefer a catcher that can run a pitching staff over one that can hit .290

  9. Blake says:

    Eh …..I think having a Georgy around would make me miss Jorge too much…..

  10. vin says:

    Here’s where having a former light-hitting catcher as a manager is a detriment. I’m sure Girardi thinks Stewart is really contributing. As a side note, I love how the annoucers and coaching staff perceive CC as working well with Stewart partly because CC doesn’t shake Stewart off. CC NEVER shakes off his catcher. His stuff is just so good that he can get away with so-so pitch selection.

    • jim p says:

      Note that CC has not been his usual stunning self this season either. Not to say he’s been bad, just hasn’t had a run of awesome shutdown like we’ve seen before. If my memory serves.

      • vin says:

        He definitely seems like he hasn’t hit his stride yet, but it’s still hot out… so there’s always time.

        I’m just not partial to giving too much credit/blame to the catcher when it comes to a guy like CC.

    • Andruw's Smile says:

      I’m with you here. I really can’t see Girardi being okay with shuttling out Stewart and bringing in another catcher to work with Pitchers.

  11. The Real Greg says:

    My possible solution is a former Yankee prospect who has played a bit in the majors. He is currently at the AAA level with the Reds and is hitting .337/.405/.463. He is also throwing out 35% of base stealers. The Reds have their catcher of the future in Devin Mesaraco and Ryan Hanigan is a solid catcher.

    I think the Yankees should take a swipe at getting Dioner Navarro.

  12. mark says:

    The Yanks should go for it. From what I have seen of Chris Stewart thus far, his defense is overrated.

  13. OldYanksFan says:

    Speaking of Brewers……
    per ESPN:
    Zack Greinke is on his way out of Milwaukee.
    Brewers general manager Doug Melvin said Thursday the starting pitcher will be traded before Tuesday’s 4 p.m. ET deadline, according to USA Today.

  14. AC says:

    He left what 114 mill on table in extension talks with Brewers so I don’t blame them for getting something for him.

  15. Steve S says:

    Give the Brewers Chris Dickerson back.

  16. Swazi13 says:

    Anybody have any opinions on John Jaso?

  17. pistol pete says:

    Don’t like changing catchers on a winning team. Our catcher’s can’t hit but neither can Kottara. He does have a good eye and has walked a lot this year which is very strange. Another left handed hitter though. I don’t think it’s worth the while and would be more interested in watching Philly’s performance now that they’re 9 out in the wild card. Would like to snag Wiggington for a cheap rental to replace Arod for 2 mos. Polonco’s out leaving Philly no third basemen which is probably holding things up. He’d be a nice fit, cheap, contract over at year end, a veteran who can play first or third, has a little power, and has played in NY and in the AL East in Baltimore. Would love to ee Cash get him.

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