Catcher is an interesting spot for the Grizzlies as they will see several different guys here throughout the season. To start the season, the two guys who will be in Fresno will be the newly acquired Juan Centeno, and former top catching prospect Max Stassi, assuming he gets through waivers, as he is out of minor league options. Both these guys have major league experience and will be emergency catchers if either Evan Gattis or Brian McCann suffer an injury.
Centeno was acquired coming from the Twins this past off-season. He looks to see if a change of scenery can spark his career. At one point, Centeno was supposed to be the heir to the catcher throne in Minnesota, where legend Joe Mauer is aging. Centeno never lived up to his prospect hype, and at 27, is now a career back-up.
Will the real Stassi turn up?
Stassi was in the fast lane to stardom when he was hit in the face by Rangers pitcher Tanner Scheppers. Since then, he has struggled to find his stroke, and injuries have plagued him. 2017 is a big year for Stassi. It’s the year that he needs to prove he has potential as a major league catcher.
Magician Tyler Heineman will be at Fresno looking to show that he has major league potential. His ability to hit from both sides of the plate makes him an exciting player. Top catching prospect Garrett Stubbs will probably start the year in AA Corpus Christi, but if he continues to play like he has, the 22-year-old will see time in Fresno.