Entering his fourth season in the majors with the Los Angeles Angels, Hank Conger will be looking to use a solid spring training to help thrust him into the role as the team’s full-time catcher.
Conger has spent the last two seasons as a backup catcher to oft-injured Chris Iannetta. Iannetta has hit .233 with 20 home runs and 65 RBIs, but he also has 160 strikeouts in just 194 games played over that span.
This has not allowed for the 26-year-old to be a productive player in such a limited role as a backup as he has struggled at the plate by posting a triple slash of just .199/.281/.300 with 13 home runs and 46 RBIs in 171 major league games.
This is not just the case for Conger, but any player in any sport needs a sufficient amount of playing time for them to get comfortable and produce. As for Conger, he proved that very case in his first four seasons in the Angels’ minor league system as he had a triple slash of .297/.355/.467 with 12 home runs and 61 RBIs.
He has shown that he can be a productive player when given the chance to play full-time. So with the 2014 spring training just days away, it will provide Conger an opportunity to show the Halos that he is ready to take the responsibility as their everyday catcher.
Conger now has the much-needed experience to fulfill the position; all he now must do is have a solid spring training with his bat and behind the plate. Although Iannetta is currently the favorite as the team’s starting catcher, things can quickly change if the 26-year-old puts together an impressive month of baseball starting Feb. 28.