Blue Jays Top 10 Catchers of All Time

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3. Gregg Zaun

Gregg Zaun was taken in the 17th round of the 1989 draft by the Orioles. He spent 5 years in the minors before getting his first crack at the bigs in 1995. He played with Baltimore, Florida, Texas, Kansas, Houston and Colorado before signing with the Blue Jays as a free agent at age 33. Zaun had never been a number one catcher before coming to the Jays. In fact, nobody was expecting much at all out of Zaun when the Jays scooped him up. His career was in the tank. It was looking as if his career trajectory was taking him into 3rd string catcher territory. However, the Blue Jays were severely lacking at the position and took a chance.

The team was richly rewarded and Zaun’s career was resurrected. He cracked 300 ABs for the first time in his career and slashed .269/.367/.393 while providing high quality defence. Zaun was handed more responsibilities in 2005 and had the best season of his career. He posted a .729 OPS, appeared in 133 games and put up a 2.1 dWAR.

In 2006 the Blue Jays felt compelled to sign Bengie Molina—which made Zaun the back up. At the end of the year however, Zaun and Molina were in a platoon and Zaun ended the season with a greater WAR (1.5 to 0.9). Zaun was once again the clear number one in 2007 and had solid season. The Jays put Zaun in a backup role with the signing of Rod Barajas for 2008. Tired of the Blue Jays’ flip flopping, Zaun moved on in 2009. He played for the Rays, O’s and Brewers before retiring prior to the 2011 season. His retirement came earlier than he would have liked after sustaining a serious shoulder injury with the Brewers.

Zaun went into broadcasting after retirement and is currently an analyst (“man-alyst”) with Sportsnet.

Among Jays’ catchers all-time he ranks 2nd in WAR, 4th in games, 5th in home runs, 1st in BB%, 4th in RBI, 1st in OBP, 7th in defensive runs.

Next: No. 2: Don Cherry would be proud, a good Canadian boy!