Thursday, August 12, 2010
A Note for the Cibians
The Star's Richard Griffin took a lot of heat on Twitter last night when he posted a throwaway comment about Aaron Cibia's catcher ERA (It isn't good, unlike Griff's Jamaican flag twitter background, which is amazing.) While this tweet was surely accompanied by a knowing smirk, a small part of me worries he might not be all wrong.
Above is a screen grab (from Gameday, holla!) of Arencibia's target as Marcum prepared to deliver to J.D. Drew. The pitch, I don't think I need to remind you, traveled some 450 feet and put a sweet dent in the facing of the second deck. If you look closely you'll notice the target provided by Arencibia is no target at all.
The San Francisco Giants held can't-miss stud Buster Posey out of the big league lineup for far too long this season, citing his unpolished defensive skills. While the Giants generally operate on a "don't do what we do" basis, maybe they were on to something.
Scouts praise Arencibia's improved defense and the Jays don't seem too worried about it. Providing a strong target is a tiny, mostly insignificant piece of the defensive puzzle; but you do tend to hear ex-catchers and pitchers in the broadcast booth rave about certain catcher's ability to provide a big target.
Maybe it's nothing, maybe it's something. But given the results and the photographic evidence, this should be an easy fix to eliminate at least one possible cause of consecutive bad outings.