A.J. Pierzynski had a career season with the Chicago White Sox in 2012 and because of it he will be getting paid a pretty penny by the Texas Rangers in 2013. Last season Mike Napoli was the man behind the plate for the team and he got the job done but, Pierzynski will have a tough task in 2013.
More importantly Pierzynski has never been the player he was in 2012 so I can’t quite believe he will clobber 27 home runs like he did last season. In an MLB contact year he made no mistake about putting up a career season that got him a one year $7.5M from the Rangers.
Enduring the Texas heat will be a challenge for a player like Pierzynski who has never played in a state south of Illinois. Catching is a different animal in such a brutal climate with the equipment seemingly radiating heat. He has struggled in the past with throwing out runners and this will only decrease the already abysmal 26% of runners he threw out in 2012.
The Rangers made a rare first round exit in 2012 and are not making any progress by losing Josh Hamilton and bringing in the 36-year-old catcher.
I have always adored the way Pierzynski played with a wild-eyed and fiery mentality however, I could not think of a worse fit for the slugger. In addition, I feel that his bloated numbers in 2012 are fantastic and eye-opening but, are not a reflection of the player Pierzynski is on a daily basis.
Look for the Rangers to be competitive in the AL West although, I still feel that they could’ve done better at the catcher position.