Blue Jays acquire veteran catcher Juan Graterol from L.A.
The Blue Jays added a veteran catcher to their ranks on Wednesday, acquiring Juan Graterol from the L.A. Angels in exchange for cash considerations.
This will be the second go-around with the Blue Jays organization, who played four games with the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons back in 2017. The 32 year old has spent the bulk of his career in the Angels’ organization, where he’s made 58 of his 67 career appearances in a big league game, also making stops with the Cincinnati Reds and Minnesota Twins.
Graterol likely won’t factor into the Blue Jays’ MLB roster plans unless they have an injury to cover, but his arrival could shift how they do things before the first pitch on Thursday. More than likely, the Jays acquiring Graterol means they have other plans for Reese McGuire, who could either be traded or designated for assignment to make room for someone else on the 40-man roster.
With Danny Jansen and Alejandro Kirk set to open the year as the catching tandem, that leaves McGuire on the outside looking in. Since he’s out of minor league options the Blue Jays can’t just stash him in Triple-A either, so we can likely expect an announcement either tonight or early tomorrow morning about his future.
As for Graterol, he doesn’t offer a lot more than some veteran depth with a fairly steady defensive presence, which is really most of what you need from a back-up or organizational depth. Over parts of four seasons in the big leagues he’s slashed .218/.227/.266 with six doubles and 14 RBI to his name across 124 at-bats.
As uninspiring as those numbers may be, it’s a good thing that the Blue Jays found at least one veteran catcher to join the depth chart, especially if McGuire isn’t long for a departure. After Jansen and Kirk the Blue Jays would probably turn to Riley Adams if they needed a third catcher, and Graterol will has by far the most professional experience of the lot.