The CATCHer That Got Away

Posted by Don M, Mon, January 02, 2012 09:54 AM | Comments: 13
Analysis, Minor Leagues, News, Opinion, Posts

Travis D'Arnaud

Phillies.com posted a video of Ruben Amaro answering questions from seasons ticket holders via Tom McCarthy and most of the questions got a standard, friendly non-answer.  Then, Ruben dished on the guys behind the dish.

Q:  “Of all the young players you’ve traded away over the last five years, if you could have one of them back, who would it be?”

A:  “I would say, because of the lack of depth in this area, I would say Travis D’Arnaud, probably one of the better catchers in all of baseball, it really hurt when we moved him… when you’re moving young talent, you try to stay out of the middle of the field, (C, SS, CF), because those can be the backbone of your club.

We had to put him in the deal to make it happen.  At the time it was more of a decision between D’Arnaud and Brown, and while we like both guys a lot, we thought that Brown was closest and the guy that would make more impact on us at that time.  And we decided to go with D’Arnaud and I’d like to have him back, he’s a good one.”

Later in the interview…

Q:  “What does the Phillies pipeline at Catcher look like?”

A:  “The next guy I think that has a very good chance to be a major leaguer is Sebastian Valle.  He’s a young man who we just put on the roster, he’s from Mexico… he’s developing as a catcher, he’s got great power, what we like about him is that he’s improved his catching skills year in and year out, and he’s got a lot of power potential.  You don’t have that combination very often at that position.  As long as he continues to develop his defensive skills, he’s got a strong arm, he’s still learning to work with pitchers, still learning to be quiet behind the plate, as long as he continues to develop on that side of the ball, he’s got a chance to be a front line catcher.”

Read into it what you will, but does it seem like he wishes that Brown was gone, and that D’Arnaud were here instead?  Or just that he still wishes he had D’Arnaud?  Is there any truth to the rumors from a few weeks ago that the Phillies are interested in reacquiring D’Arnaud?  Or was that just the Phillies doing their due diligence and checking in on the best players in baseball?

It was interesting to me that Amaro was willing to give definitive answers to the questions above instead of the typical, “We’d love to have all of those guys back, but we realize you have to give up talent to get talent in return.”   Despite our best wishes, Carlos Ruiz can’t play forever… wonder what happens next.

Avatar of Don M

About Don M

Don M has written 21 articles on Phillies Nation.

  • Posts: 0 TheDipsy

    Dear Don, beloved poster, a Happy New Year to you sir. Is this a steady gig for you now? I heard that Valle can’t throw. I must say its the first time I’ve heard that a catcher can’t be quiet behind the plate. Tell Ruben if he needs help with that I can give him some tips that I’ve used with my wife. :) Of course D’Arnaud was tough to give up. At the time, Brown was the better prospect. Now, after a year, its D’Arnaud. Oh well. Thats the way it goes.

    The Dipsy

  • Posts: 0 Chris

    In another part of the video he talks about Brown and how he is still part of the plan and that he even has a chance to make the team this year if he tears it up. I think he just would like to have both. D’arnaud for how good of a prospect he is still 2 years away.

  • Posts: 0 Chris

    Getting D’arnaud back would require a prospect package of the likes of May, Valle, Biddle, plus maybe more or it would take giving up a superstar, read Hamels. I don’t think either of these will happen but I suppose the Hamels one is possible.

    • Posts: 1435 Pat Gallen

      Avatar of Pat Gallen

      Chris, no way in hell it would take Cole Hamels to get a guy who hasn’t even sniffed the major leagues. D’Arnaud is a nice prospect, but hardly a sure thing just yet. Hamels is a top 5 pitcher in his league.

      • Posts: 3087 Chuck A.

        Avatar of Chuck A.

        And there’s also no way in hell that Cole Hamels is going anywhere, either.

    • Posts: 0 Chris

      I’m not saying the Phils would get only D’arnaud in that trade. It’d be a package centered around D’arnaud. It would be one centered around D’arnaud but less total than what Halladay netted probably. Whether you think getting rid of Hamels for that is another story. I know I certainly would rather have Hamels.

  • Posts: 0 BART SHART

    Hopefully Valle will continue to improve. We will need him, that’s for sure.

  • Posts: 0 frank riccard

    I think D’Arnaud can be had. Isn’t he blocked for the foreseeable future in Toronto any way?

  • Posts: 0 TheDipsy

    Chris, put the bong down. How about Hamels for D’Arnaud, Drabek, and Bautista? Toronto would actually do that.

    The Dipsy

    • Posts: 0 Chris

      Dipsy I’m not saying D’arnaud for Hamels straight up. But the only way you’d get D’arnaud back is in a package for someone like Hamels. And no Toronto wouldn’t actually do your proposed trade

  • Posts: 5559 Lefty

    Avatar of Lefty

    Given the chance, I’d make that same trade for Roy Halladay 100 times over. I don’t care how good Travis D. turns out to be.

    It’s ironic that I bash Ruben for many of his decisions, and the only move that “hurts” him, is the best one he’s ever made.

  • Posts: 0 Don M

    The nice thing for the Blue Jays is that playing in the AL… You can get away with having two “catchers” if they can both hit

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