Phillies acquire Paulino from Bucs
Jaramillo goes to Pittsburgh in swap of catchers
By Barry M. Bloom / MLB.com
Raises an eyebrow. Two trades since Ruben took over and they’d both been minor league prospect for minor league prospect. Okay, Junior, there’s better be a method to this while we all wait to hear the final results of the Peavy trade.
LAS VEGAS — The Phillies and Pirates completed a swap of catchers on Wednesday night, with Ronny Paulino coming to Philadelphia in exchange for Jason Jaramillo.
“We just think it was a good move to give us an incremental edge,” said Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. “Sometimes, it’s the little moves that can help, and it gives us depth at a premium position that we needed.”
It was Amaro’s second trade since he replaced Pat Gillick only days after the Phillies defeated the Rays at the end of October to win the second World Series in franchise history. Last month, he acquired John Mayberry Jr. from Texas for Greg Golson in a swap of outfielders.
Paulino, 27, split last season between Pittsburgh, Triple-A Indianapolis and the Gulf Coast League Pirates. In 40 games (27 starts) for Pittsburgh, he hit .212 with two home runs and 18 RBIs, although those figures leapt to .387 (12-for-31) and 14 RBIs with runners in scoring position.
Behind the plate for the Bucs, Paulino threw out 26 percent (8-for-31) of potential basestealers, and for his career, he has caught 24 percent (51-for-216).
Amaro said the deal could lead to interesting choices down the road. The Phillies are already carrying two catchers: starter Carlos Ruiz and Chris Coste.
“Ruiz is our No. 1 catcher,” Amaro said. “I think he deserves that. Really, in Spring Training, it will be a competition at backup, frankly, and it wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility that we’d carry three catchers. Chris Coste has the ability to do a variety of things and there may be room. But it creates a competition at the very least, and that’s good for our club.”
Jaramillo, 26, hit .266 with eight home runs and 39 RBIs in 115 games for Triple-A Lehigh Valley this past season. He was a second-round selection by the Phillies in the 2004 First-Year Player Draft. He was an International League All-Star in 2007 and ’08, while leading all catchers with this past season with 113 games played. (H/T Phillies.com)
Okay, the Phillies have now traded one minor league catcher to the Pirates for one of theirs. I hope that Paulino will help the ballclub in the future. Hey, Ruben, how about trading for someone who can help the team now and not the future?