After the trade of veteran Jonathan Lucroy the Rangers now get to see if Robinson Chirinos can be the everyday guy. Does Chirinos have what it takes to be a full-time catcher in the MLB?
Before the trade deadline Texas Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said he thought Robinson Chirinos could hold down the role behind the plate. The 33-year-old catcher has been given a huge opportunity, but can he capitalize on it?
This season Chirinos is batting .209 with 12 home runs and 26 RBI in 49 games. The 12 long balls is just one behind his career-high set in 2014. The veteran catcher has played as expected this season, but does he have a future as a starter?
The Rangers signed Chirinos through 2018 with a team option for 2019. He currently is posting a 1.1 WAR and Texas likes what he brings to the table. It’s hard to imagine Chirinos being the No. 1 guy behind the plate in 2018.
For the rest of 2017 the Rangers will go with Chirinos as the No. 1 catcher. Recently recalled Brett Nicholas will serve in more of a backup role. This will give Chirinos an opportunity to prove he can be a starting catcher.
The career statistics point to more of a reliable backup catcher, but we’ll see what he can do. After trading Jonathan Lucroy the Rangers will look to restock behind the plate this off-season.
The direction of the organization will also factor into if Chirinos can be an everyday guy in 2018. If the team is going into rebuild then expect to see more of Chirinos next season. Right now he’s a solid backup catcher, but hard to see him ever being much more in the MLB.