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Astros: The BEST Catcher Available?

Updated: Dec 8, 2022

We will be going live 12/8/22 9:00PM to talk about all of the Catcher ideas. PLEASE join me.

In, 2022 the Astros traded for Christian Vazquez, he became a free agent after the season, and now he is rumored to possibly be going to the Twins.

In the last month, the Astros were actively trying to sign Willson Contreras but the Cardinals were able to get the deal done.

The Astros are rumored to be pursuing Sean Murphy but there is no guarantee the Athletics would ACTUALLY trade with the Astros.

Here is the Sean Murphy/ Wilson Contreras comparison article. You can watch the video on Murphy here.

Yesterday, there were reports that the Astros were interested in Tucker Barnhart.

One of the question I have gotten in multiple Twitter Spaces over the past couple of days is some version of who else could the Astros get that would make a difference?

You may be exhausted with all of these ideas of how to improve at catcher and say just let Korey Lee and or Yainer Diaz take over as backup catcher and increase their playing time as they prove how good they are. This team essentially turned over the role of SS to Pena and never looked back. At this time last year the team was resolute that they were willing to move from their franchise icon at SS. This year, the Astros seem to be involved in every rumor about catcher there is. This tells me that the front office DOES NOT have Pena-like confidence in Lee nor Diaz. I think they are going to do SOMETHING at catcher.

What if I told you there is a catcher who started 58 games at catcher last year and delivered 2.6 WAR and his team is VERY likely to trade him? What if I told you that this catcher is projected to produce almost as much WAR as Contreras (2.8 vs. 3.0) and more than Vazquez (2,1) in 2023?

What if I told you his trade value was less than HALF of Sean Murphy?

What if this guy has been the Astros target all along and they are trying to get the other catching needy teams to commit to the other deals first?

Are you interested?

This guy was NOT the main catcher for his team and this team has a RARE surplus of catchers. Their third catcher was rated as high as being the third best prospect in all of baseball by mid-2022. He would be rated that high or higher except he exceed rookie status in 2022.

The Team is the Blue Jays and the Catcher is the Blue Jays SECOND Catcher Danny Jansen. He is by far the most likely catcher to be traded by the Blue Jays this offseason. As Astros fans you may not know about Jansen, so I built this table so you can compare him to catchers you do know.

2022 Data and 2023 Projected WAR

Jansen is simply not going to get enough playing time with the Blue Jays in 2023 with Kirk and Moreno as catchers for that team. This is Jansen's 28 year season and he had a couple of significant injuries early and in mid season last year. Someone WILL trade for Jansen before the season starts.

You still may not be convinced Jansen is the right move and want to go with Lee and Diaz. Here are the projections for those three in 2023 and their current career PA.

Neither Lee nor Diaz seems ready right now for a major role on a World Series contender. Jansen, under team control for two years, could serve as the perfect bridge from the Maldonado era to the Diaz/ Lee era. So, now that I have you interested. how would I get him?

The Blue Jays have two major needs- OF and RP.

Two Deals for Jansen 24,9 Total Trade Value

  • Deal #1

    • Chas McCormick- 31.3- 4 years control

    • Ryne Stanek- 1.7- 1 year of Control

    • FOR

    • Danny Jansen- 24.9- 2 years of Control

    • Adam Macko- 5.4- LHP- 6+ years control- #8 Fangraphs Blue Jays Prospect

  • Deal #2

    • Danny Jansen- 24.9- 2 years of Control

    • FOR

    • Drew Gilbert- 8.7- 6+ years control- #5 Fangraphs Astros Prospect

    • Pedro Leon- 6.5- 6+ years control- #6 Fangraphs Astros Prospect

    • Jake Meyers- 5.3- 5 years control

    • Ryne Stanek- 1.7- 1 year of Control

    • Total package- 22.2

I like Trade #1 WAY more than Trade #2. I hate trade 2, but it is the sort of deal that could be needed.

You may ask WHY didn't you tell us about Jansen before. In all of my trade options I have been focused on bad teams. We talked about Jansen in a Twitter space for the first time a couple of days ago and I wanted to get it right before I discussed.

If you want to propose your own deal look at the tables below. How do you get to 24.9?

I will say this as you think about your own deal. Astros fans need to realize that a realistic trade is going to cause some pain. There has to be a reason for the other team to make the trade.

Statistics are from and

Let me know what you think.

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Great work Larry! I have an idea that maybe nobody will like:

Blue Jays Get:

Framber (68.8-3 yrs)

Stanek (1.7-1 yr)

Meyers (5.3-5 yrs)

Astros Get:

Alejandro Kirk (51.9-4 yrs)

Cavan Biggio (.1-3 yrs)

Macko or Juenger (5ish-6+ years)

Don‘t get me wrong. I love Framber, but there’s a non-negligible (albeit under 50%) chance that this past season ends up being his career best, particularly with the new shift rules and his reliance on ground balls. Yes, I realize he also gets a bunch of strikeouts, but I still think we could see some marginal decline in his production.

The trade values site rates this as a moderate overpay, which I suspect would be needed to get the 23 year…

٠٩ ديسمبر ٢٠٢٢
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Thank you for thinking out of the box


٠٨ ديسمبر ٢٠٢٢

I hate both of those trades. That's not a criticism, just a reaction to losing those players. I'd rather sign Vazquez.

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This is really interesting Larry. Good stuff, I hope you are right and the Astros are also looking at Jansen

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