The Astros are finalizing a one-year contract extension with catcher Martin Maldonado, experiences Mark Feinsand of MLB.com (via Twitter). The brand new pact would additionally comprise a vesting possibility for the 2023 season. Maldonado is a consumer of MVP Sports activities Group.
The 34-year-old Maldonado is in his second totally different stint with the Astros since they acquired him from the Angels for left-hander Patrick Sandoval main as much as the July 2018 commerce deadline. Maldonado divided a few of the subsequent yr between the Royals and Cubs, solely to return to the Astros in a 2019 deal that despatched infielder/outfielder Tony Kemp to Chicago. The Astros had been impressed sufficient with Maldonado’s work that they prevented him from exiting in free company with a two-year, $7MM assure.
Maldonado usually hasn’t provided a lot as a hitter, evidenced by his lifetime .217/.291/.352 line in 2,541 plate appearances, although he did put up a career-best .215/.350/.378 final yr. Maldonado’s off to a dreadful .094/.121/.094 begin with 15 strikeouts in opposition to one stroll in 33 PA this season, however the Astros are prepared to roll the cube for an additional yr, little question owing largely to the veteran’s historical past of well-regarded work behind the plate. Maldonado has earned extraordinarily excessive lifetime marks from Baseball Prospectus’ Fielding Runs Above Average metric, piled up 75 Defensive Runs Saved and thrown out an simply above-average 36 p.c of would-be base thieves since debuting with the Brewers in 2011.
Barring any behind-the-plate adjustments in Houston, it’s slated to carry again its two present catchers – Jason Castro is the opposite – in 2022. Castro inked a two-year, $5MM contract in free company, although he has solely taken seven journeys to the plate this season. In fact, contemplating Maldonado and Castro for an inexpensive duo, the Astros might nonetheless search an improve(s) within the coming months if Maldonado and Castro don’t produce to the membership’s liking.