The Phillies have one less hole to fill, as they have brought back veteran catcher Brian Schneider on a one-year deal, the team announced Thursday.
Rumors about the move in recent days made the actual announcement even less surprising.
It’s not the sexiest move of the off-season, and at almost 35 years of age, Schneider isn’t going to bring too much offense to the club -- his OPS is .617 in his two years with the Phillies. Last season was a career worst for the backup catcher, where he hit just .176 with a pair of homers and nine RBIs in 41 games.
Despite his hitting woes, Schneider seems to have a good rapport with the pitching staff, and has served, more or less, as the personal catcher to Vance Worley. When his solid defense, behind-the-plate skills and relatively small amount of playing time are factored in, the deal, which figures to be no more than $1M in salary, is a fine, if not particularly consequential, winter signing.
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And provided that Carlos Ruiz isn’t forced to spend time on the disabled list, then we can expect the usual from Schneider in 2012: One or two starts a week, an occasional home run and more ground ball outs than line drives.
Now, about that shortstop…