Detroit Tigers News

Detroit Tigers: Building Ideal Jonathan Lucroy Trade

benrosener
Aug 9, 2014; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy (20) hits a single in the first inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Miller Park. At right is Los Angeles Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis (17). Lucroy had 3 hits as the Brewers beat the Dodgers 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 9, 2014; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy (20) hits a single in the first inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Miller Park. At right is Los Angeles Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis (17). Lucroy had 3 hits as the Brewers beat the Dodgers 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
2 of 3
Next
Detroit Tigers
Feb 21, 2016; Lakeland, FL, USA; Detroit Tigers catcher James McCann (34) works out as he hits at Joker Marchant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

The Centerpiece: James McCann

If any trade for Lucroy happens for the Tigers, there’s a good chance James McCann will be involved. Rosenthal suggested as much in another tweet, writing, “The #Mets reportedly offered d’Arnaud for Lucroy; perhaps #Tigers could start with McCann. #brewers want high-end prospects as well.”

For as bright of a future as McCann has, Lucroy is much more of a finished product and is an elite performer at his position on both sides of the ball. What’s more, there wouldn’t be room on the Detroit roster if McCann wasn’t in the hypothetical Lucroy swap.

The Tigers starter is obviously capable of starting, and the Tigers wouldn’t benefit by sticking him and his .539 OPS on the bench behind Lucroy. As of now, Jarrod Saltalamacchia is a much better fit as a deputy backstop due to his ability to hit for power.

Additionally, Milwaukee doesn’t have a ton of options to replace Lucroy in the long run, so sending McCann to the Brewers in any deal makes sense. MLB.com’s prospect rankings only lists two catchers, Jacob Nottingham and Mario Feliciano, among the top 25 prospects in the Milwaukee system.

Nottingham could potentially move off the positon at some point, while Feliciano is only 17 and won’t come close to reaching the big leagues for some time. In addition to Lucroy, the Brewers incumbent catching options at the Major League level include Martin Maldonado and Jake Elmore.

Maldonado has hit just .198 since the start of the 2013 season, while Elmore is an emergency catcher, who has only seen action in one game behind the plate. The 29-year-old is more of a utility player in the mold of Mike Aviles.

facebooktwitterreddit