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Monday, December 02, 2013

Blue Jays To Sign Dioner Navarro

Poor J.P., I feel so bad for him.

The Blue Jays have reached an agreement with catcher Dioner Navarro on a two-year deal, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter)...

It wasn’t until this past season with the Cubs that Navarro proved he can still hit at the Major League level in a big way. In 266 plate appearances with the Cubs, Navarro slashed .300/.365/.492 with 13 home runs.

Catcher was a clear area of need for the Blue Jays this offseason after J.P. Arencibia, Josh Thole, Mike Nickeas and Henry Blanco combined to bat .190/.235/.335 in 2013…

Navarro will turn 30 in February, and his signing could cost Arencibia his job, as Rosenthal notes in a second tweet. Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos recently said in a radio interview that Arencibia would not be with the club as a backup in 2014 (as chronicled by Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith). Navarro’s two-year deal seems to indicate that he’s in line for significant playing time, and the club would also like to use Thole to catch R.A. Dickey, says Rosenthal. As such, Arencibia, who projects to earn $2.1MM via arbitration this winter, could find himself on the move today, as tonight is the deadline to tender him a contract for the 2014 season.

Navarro’s contract will pay him $3MM in 2014 and $5MM in 2015, reports Jon Heyman of CBS Sports (Twitter link).

The District Attorney Posted: December 02, 2013 at 03:45 PM | 18 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: blue jays, cubs, dioner navarro, free agents, transactions

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   1. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 02, 2013 at 04:52 PM (#4608900)
Navarro put up three straight .600 OPS or below seasons recently.

But uh, yea, I'm sure he's good now and last year was not an aberration. That 1.008/.711 OPS home/road split is probably nothing to be concerned about. The important thing to know here is he's definitely NOT J.P. Arencibia.
   2. TJ Posted: December 02, 2013 at 04:57 PM (#4608907)
Yikes! Way to cash in on those 266 plate appearances, Dioner!
   3. I Am Not a Number Posted: December 02, 2013 at 04:57 PM (#4608908)
The important thing to know here is he's definitely NOT J.P. Arencibia.

That's his best attribute.
   4. zonk Posted: December 02, 2013 at 04:58 PM (#4608913)
Was really surprised that the Cubs didn't move him at the deadline - not saying he'd have fetched much, but thought he was at least worth a lottery ticket... Of course, the Cubs literally would have been reduced to giving JD Boscan significant PAs and Iowa would have then needed to recruit people out of the stands to try their hand at catching.
   5. McCoy Posted: December 02, 2013 at 05:09 PM (#4608928)
Apparently backup catchers are the new backup QBs.
   6. Jim Wisinski Posted: December 02, 2013 at 05:19 PM (#4608945)
Navarro has had plenty of struggles offensively and while he has always had good defensive tools he was often lazy about blocking balls in the dirt and had a scattershot arm in his time with the Rays. Arencibia being so awful is the only reason Navarro could be considered a sure upgrade.
   7. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: December 02, 2013 at 11:29 PM (#4609194)
I think this was one of the better free agent signings thus far. Yes, he's had sustained runs of poor hitting - but he's also been a good hitter multiple times in his career. If he stays motivated (only a 2 year deal, should be okay there) and gets rested reasonably often (and it helps that his battery mate is a lefty - Navarro is quite a bit better from the right side), a reasonable expectation (albeit one with a lot of variance) is average or slightly better production for the position, even accounting for defensive issues.
   8. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: December 03, 2013 at 12:33 AM (#4609238)
Arencibia non-tendered.
   9. ptodd Posted: December 03, 2013 at 03:16 AM (#4609304)
Thought the Blue Jays would have been interested in Salty. Maybe they were but the interest was not returned. Navarro not as good as his numbers last year suggest, not in the AL East facing the Red Sox and Rays pitching and unable to face his own teams pitching.
   10. Jason Michael(s) Bourn Identity Crisis Posted: December 03, 2013 at 07:03 AM (#4609313)
Navarro can probably be a .250/.310/.400 player with adequate defense if he isn't overworked. That's not a bad player. I'm assuming, of course, that some of his power gains are for real - but his minor league numbers suggest that he's improved a little as a hitter. I remember his approach as a prospect being described as "passive" - perhaps the guy finally learned to swing the bat.
   11. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: December 03, 2013 at 07:59 AM (#4609320)
2/8 is peanuts. Last year's a fluke year but that doesn't mean the right thing to do when projecting is to throw it out. Add it all up and the Jays got a good deal, even if he craters the financial obligation is minimal.
   12. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: December 03, 2013 at 09:53 AM (#4609351)
I'm assuming, of course, that some of his power gains are for real - but his minor league numbers suggest that he's improved a little as a hitter. I remember his approach as a prospect being described as "passive" - perhaps the guy finally learned to swing the bat.


He's been in the league for 9 years - don't minor league numbers become a bit irrelevant at that point?
   13. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 03, 2013 at 10:28 AM (#4609374)
He's been in the league for 9 years - don't minor league numbers become a bit irrelevant at that point?


Why, as recently as 2012 he spent nearly the entire year in the minors!
   14. formerly dp Posted: December 03, 2013 at 11:01 AM (#4609406)
Just as a FWIW: Arencibia's a career .205/.255/.363 hitter on the road-- his home numbers are .218/.262/.454. So the power might be entirely a SkyDome illusion.
   15. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: December 03, 2013 at 11:07 AM (#4609412)
So the power might be entirely a SkyDome illusion.


Probably not, since he hit for power in the minors, too.
   16. formerly dp Posted: December 03, 2013 at 11:24 AM (#4609430)
Probably not, since he hit for power in the minors, too.
So did Josh Phelps. And Travis Snider.
   17. AROM Posted: December 03, 2013 at 11:29 AM (#4609434)
Probably not, since he hit for power in the minors, too.


That was in Las Vegas, where every hitter is a winner. To be fair, he hit 27 homers in 2008 between Dunedin and New Hampshire.
   18. Rants Mulliniks Posted: December 03, 2013 at 11:40 AM (#4609441)
JP does have legitimate power when he runs into one, but that's his only offensive skill.

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