MLB.com and Astros writer, Brian McTaggart, tweeted minutes ago, that Mike Kvasnicka, is now moving back to catcher full time. He will be in training camp to help catch bullpen sessions. Kvasnicka was the Astros supplemental first round pick in the 2010 MLB Draft. He was drafted as a third baseman from the University of Minnesota despite having never played the position more than a handful of times. Kvasnicka was primarily a catcher in college but did occasionally mix in some starts as an outfielder.
The decision to move Kvasnicka back behind the plate is long overdue. When Kvasnicka was selected and announced as a third baseman, I was left scratching my head as I had read going into the draft that he was a well regarded catching prospect. I didn’t understand why we would move a first round pick to a position he has never played purely to fill a need rather than just drafting a third baseman. Coincidentally, two of the top third base prospects in MLB were taken after Kvasnicka in Nick Castellanos and Mike Olt. However, these are the same decision makers who believed it was best to move 2005 first round pick (and current Astros RF) Brian Bogusevic from OF back to SP. The experiment with Bogusevic failed miserably and he was moved back to the outfield where he flourished. My guess is that he will start the season in High A, Lancaster. Kvasnicka already has Chris Wallace ahead of him at AA, but at this point, it doesn’t matter. Kvasnicka projects a lot better as a catcher than a third baseman. His numbers last year were horrible for a third baseman but pretty average for a catcher. Here’s hoping he can build on that now that he is back playing a position he is comfortable with.