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New York Mets catcher report cards for the 2018 MLB season

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NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 27: Kevin Plawecki #26 of the New York Mets is congratulated in the dugout by Devin Mesoraco #29 and Michael Conforto #30 after hitting a home run against the Atlanta Braves during the third inning of a game at Citi Field on September 27, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 27: Kevin Plawecki #26 of the New York Mets is congratulated in the dugout by Devin Mesoraco #29 and Michael Conforto #30 after hitting a home run against the Atlanta Braves during the third inning of a game at Citi Field on September 27, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
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Travis d’Arnaud

The Nickname: Lil d (Players Weekend), Crunch

The Review: In a nine-day span, Travis d’Arnaud started four games as the Mets catcher and suffered a season-ending injury. Amazingly, he got hurt after starting on consecutive days for the first time; his first two games came after at least three days rest. If he had a better arm, he could be a starting pitcher.

The Offensive stats: Let’s forget 2018 because it’s far from statistically significant.

  • Career offensive stats:
    • PA 1469
    • AB 1337
    • AVE .245
    • OBP .306
    • SLG .406
    • OPS .712
    • wRC+ 96
    • wOBA .308

The Defensive stats:

  • Framing runs 1.0 (incredibly, he was seventh among all 117 catchers in CSAA, the rate that is multiplied by framing chances to get framing runs saved.) And to show this wasn’t a fluke, he was 18th in 2017 out of all 111 catchers, and 20th out of 104 catchers in 2016.
  • FRAA_ADJ (Adjusted Fielding Runs Above Average from Baseball Prospectus)
    • 1.0
    • 42nd best of 117 catchers in 2018

The Grade: Incomplete (career with Mets: complete?)

Notes: It’s odd how close d’Arnaud’s career offensive stats are to Mesoraco’s 2018, especially wRC+ and wOBA.

My sense is that d’Arnaud will be non-tendered, ending a very disappointing run as the Mets top catcher who only started more than 80 games twice.

He will perhaps be remembered for a well above-average 2015 when he missed three months with two long-term injuries, but in between slashed .268/.340/.485/.825. He had a miserable postseason and hasn’t contributed much of anything good since then.

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