Much like any player who continually chips away at the mold of a franchise, Milwaukee Brewers’ catcher Jonathan Lucroy has a real shot become the next “face of the Brewers”. Lucroy has built an impressive resume to this very day, so it’s clearly not out of the question that he is a player to build around.
Of course, Lucroy isn’t alone in the sense that he’s a franchise player, but he’s a part of the equation in Milwaukee that’s working well.
Jonathan Lucroy has been one of Milwaukee’s most clutch hitters this season. Mandatory Credit: Reid Compton-USA TODAY Sports
The first prominent detail about Lucroy is he’s one of a few very select class of catchers who can actually hit for a decent average. In the long list of catchers, you have players like Yadier Molina, Buster Posey, Joe Mauer and younger guys like Wilin Rosario and Salvador Perez, but then the list of decent hitting catchers starts to drops off. However, Lucroy is making a case to bust into that top five, provided he’s not already there.
Going off of that, the one thing Lucroy seems to do is hit in the clutch for Milwaukee. This season, Lucroy is hitting well with runners on with a .304 average, so he takes advantage of his opportunities.
Lucroy can still smack across a decent amount of hits, especially with 21 doubles this season. Overall, Lucroy is hitting .287/.342/.472 and has 17 home runs with 77 RBIs this season, which is pretty well for catchers across the league.
Besides being a clutch hitter, Lucroy’s intensity behind the plate makes him the all-around catcher any manager would want. He may not have the cannon arm that Molina has, considering Lucroy has only thrown out 23 percent of runners attempting to steal on him, but his .995 fielding percentage and only five errors are rather impressive.
That said, I’m not trying to compare Lucroy to the other catchers in the league. Instead, let’s look at Lucroy as a Brewer and where he’ll stand once his career ends. Since he made his debut in 2010, Lucroy has been one of the core Brewers and had become overshadowed by players like Ryan Braun and Corey Hart, but no more will that be the case. Lucroy’s tools are guiding him to truly create a legacy in Milwaukee that will be remembered for years.
With Braun’s situation really destroying his own reputation, one has to wonder if Brewers’ fans will try to create a new “face of franchise”. While this vote could go between several players, Lucroy is the guy who I believe deserves that title. Lucroy is a class act on and off the field, a dangerous part of the line-up and definitely an integral part of the team.
Lucroy does have a contract that will have him remain a Brewer until 2016 (with a team option for 2017), but something tells me he’s beginning to earn an extension. Day in, day out, Lucroy has proved his worth as a pillar of the team and going forward, he’s going to be one of the most memorable Brewers for a long time.