The New York Mets made the unfortunate decision to send Travis d’Arnaud to Triple-A Las Vegas for an undetermined amount of time. In his stead, Taylor Teagarden will get his opportunity to share catching duties with Anthony Recker.
Teagarden, 30, was once a part of a talented, young catching foursome in the Texas Rangers‘ system, but he never panned out. Really, none of the four catchers panned out, but that’s a story for a different time. Teagarden was often competing with Jarrod Saltalamacchia for the starting catching role with the Rangers, and he often lost out.
He played four seasons with the Rangers, never amassing more than 60 games played, and in 2011, he was traded to the Baltimore Orioles, but it never really amounted to anything. This past offseason, though, the Mets invited him to Spring Training. He has played 34 games for the Las Vegas 51s, and he is hitting .279 with eight home runs and 19 RBIs.
One thing is for sure — he will bring power to a lineup that sorely needs it.
That is one thing Teagarden has always been able to do. Despite playing less than 30 games per year, he has 20 career home runs, so the power does translate even though he doesn’t often see a ton of playing time.
He will find himself in a similar position with the Mets as he was with the Rangers, but due to Terry Collins‘ willingness to play the “hot hand,” Teagarden could win the position outright if he plays well enough because while Recker is a solid backup, he can’t be relied upon to carry the catching duties.
In a game of second chances, Teagarden has his, and hopefully he makes the most of it.