Several positions on the Major League Baseball diamond are important. Everyone needs power at first base and in the corners of the outfield. Shortstop can give some on offense but needs to be good to great defensively. On and on it goes but there are also a lot of overlooked positions of importance on every 40-man roster in MLB. The Kansas City Royals tried to address one such position with the signing of minor league free agent Francisco Pena.
Pena is the son of MLB coach and former major leaguer Tony Pena and has been a minor league catcher for a while. Lately he garnered some attention but the Royals had reportedly been watching him for quite a while and wanted to sign him to possibly get a boost at the backup catcher position. That is one of the unsung hero positions on every MLB roster but it most certainly matters to have a solid backup.
Though he might not blow the world away on offense, Pena does know how to handle himself in the batter’s box. He hit for a .254 average with 9 homers and 47 RBI in 89 games in the minors this past season. Couple that with the career average of throwing out 30% of potential base-stealers and you have what could be one of the more solid backups in the game. Especially in the American League having a backup catcher that can handle the bat matters. It is possible that the Royals have a brand new and exciting option coming at that position in 2014.