This morning it was announced that the Seattle Mariners acquired catcher Rob Brantly from the Chicago White Sox in a waiver claim. To make room for Brantly on the 40-Man roster, P Ryan Cook was placed on the 60-Day disabled list.
Brantly is a 26 year old left-handed catcher who first debuted with the, then, Florida Marlins in 2012 and managed to put up 0.6WAR is just over 100 PA's as a young gun. However, 2012 was a long time ago and, sure Brantly is now finally at the age where a catcher typically is considered "seasoned" enough to make the MLB jump, but things have looked dark since. His second year with the Marlins saw Brantly's production take a turn for the worse and he's yet to put up positive value since that 2012 season.
The acquisition allows us to read too deeply in to a couple different issues on the current roster. The first is that Steve Clevenger potentially has roster competition now. A lefty-hitting backup catcher is a pretty specific role and acquiring a second sure seems like it lights at least a small fire under Clevenger. The second piece is that you have to look at the 40-man and think Steve Baron is even more expendable than before. Of course, AAA Tacoma will need catchers and likely that's all we're seeing here, but the 40-man is getting a little heavy with backup catchers.
The next piece of the roster impact is more concerning. Ryan Cook moving to the 60-day DL means he certainly won't be throwing for the M's any time soon and we have to wonder what the status of Evan Scribner is as well. If they both suffered similar strains, is it just a matter of time before Scribner finds his way to the 60-day? I'm sure the Pile is due another member soon.
Of course, there is another, more comforting and likely more realistic universe where this move is exactly what you thought it was at first blush when you read the article title. A move for a "who?" that makes you think "huh" and then you learn that the only non-placental mammals in the universe live in Australia and you think "why" and then you forget about this article but the name Rob comes up later in the day and you think "who" and then you remember the echidna and you think "what".
All to say, welcome to Seattle, Rob.
We hope you're at least as interesting as an echidna.