His market has shrunk so much, you'd think he was in the pool. - Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE
Fan favorite catcher not drawing a lot of interest on the free agent market.
A.J. Pierzynski had one of his finest seasons in 2012 when he hit .278/.326/.501 with 27 homers and 77 knocked in. It looked like he priced himself out of the White Sox plans as he entered free agency. General Manager Rick Hahn and the rest of the White Sox brass seem to be content with Tyler Flowers taking on the role as the everyday catcher.
Now, according to Jon Heyman, there doesn't seem to be much of a market for Pierzynski. Heyman says that the Mariners and Rangers aren't "overly enthused" about Pierzynski. He says the Dodgers chances of signing him are "less than zero".
The biggest threat seems to be the Yankees, who tried to bring back Russell Martin but lost out to the Pittsburgh Pirates. Heyman claims they are making plans to move forward with Austin Romine and Francisco Cervelli. That doesn't seem to be the Yankee thing to do.
Personally, I think Pierzynski would be a great fit in New York. The Yankees are hated and constantly boo'd. A.J. thrives in that situation. The right field fence in New York makes U.S. Cellular look like a canyon, so maybe he can stay at 20+ home runs. It is a veteran team who's window of opportunity is closing. It doesn't make sense for them to hand over the backstop role to two guys who are as green as grass.
Lets pretend that they aren't interested in him though. I am for going with Flowers this year. But what is the tipping point? If Pierzynski can't get a deal elsewhere, what should the White Sox offer him? Is 2 years/ $12 million a good enough deal to put Flowers back on hold?
I like Flowers. He's one of my son's favorite players and given every day at bats I'm sure he'd hit over 20 dingers. He has shown the ability to take a walk. He is very good on defense. He's never done it every day though. He also strikes out an awful lot. A lineup that includes Dunn and Flowers on an everyday basis is looking at more than 400 strikeouts between two guys. While I'm not a big anti-strikeout guy, it is nice to have someone that can put the ball in play... or to steal from Scott Merkin... be an adept bat handler and Pierzynski can certainly do that.
Remember, earlier in the offseason, the Mets were said to be interested in Flowers. It is possible to bring back Pierzynski and let Flowers blossom in another uniform.
So what would be the right move Sox fans? Would you sign A.J. if nobody else is willing to make that big offer we all thought he would get? Or would you go with Tyler Flowers no matter what is going on with Pierzynski.