Minor Moves: Catchers on the Move; Nick Gonzales Returns to Action

The Pittsburgh Pirates made some moves with catchers that affects three of their four full-season affiliates. Here’s a quick rundown. If anything else pops up today, we will add it below.

Abrahan Gutierrez has been placed on the 7-day Injured List for the second time this year. He really struggled for Greensboro after returning to action just over a week ago. Through 15 games this season, he has a .207/.324/.293 slash line in 68 plate appearances.

Luis Hernandez returns to Greensboro. He replaced Gutierrez last time he was hurt. Hernandez played two games during that time, before returning to the Development List. He’s basically serving as Greensboro’s third catcher without being on the active roster most of the time. Eli Wilson will likely see the bulk of the catching time.

Dylan Shockley has returned to Altoona from Indianapolis. He joined them for a time when Grant Koch was their only healthy catcher, leaving Indianapolis without a true starting catcher. That was after they lost Endy Rodriguez to injury, as well as losing Tyler Heineman on waivers.

Rodriguez returned over the weekend as a DH, after missing ten days with a right forearm strain. He has now been cleared to catch, so Indianapolis now has a legit starter, while Altoona gets their strong defensive catcher back. They were rolling with Claudio Finol as the backup to Henry Davis.

Finol caught two games in 2021. That was his only catching experience prior to taking up the role this spring, which morphed into him working as the catcher in the Altoona bullpen this year, while being placed on the Development List.

UPDATE: Just as I posted the article, I got word that infielder Nick Gonzales has been activated from the Injured List for Indianapolis. His trip to the IL was more precaution than anything after he hurt his shoulder on a swing. He’s hitting .250/.341/.431 in 20 games this season. While his OPS is fine for the league (just points below league average), he has a 36.5% strikeout rate.

John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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Good seeing Endy making hard contact.

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