Brewers: Is Robinson Chirinos a target in free agency?
Now that Yasmani Grandal is back on the free agent market and looking for a big contract, the Milwaukee Brewers will need to look at other free agent catching possibilities. One of those options might be Robinson Chirinos.
Robinson Chirinos was signed by the Houston Astros on a one year deal worth $5.75 million in December of 2018, and had a pretty productive year for them. In 2019, the 35-year old Chirinos only hit .238, but had an on-base percentage of .347 as well as 17 homers in 366 at-bats .
Over the past three seasons Chirinos has averaged just over 17 homers per year and has also averaged an OBP of .348 during that time.
Chirinos has a decent amount of playoff experience as well. He played in limited postseason action for Texas in 2015 and 2016, and then played quite a bit during Houston’s run to the World Series this year. Overall, Chirinos has 57 postseason plate appearances and also hit two home runs in this years’ World Series.
Chirinos is not young for a catcher, but was used sparingly earlier in his career and as a result has only played in 576 games over an eight year career. Because of his limited use, he may have more mileage left than most 35 year old catchers.
Overall, he rates above average defensively but his weakest area is his inability to control the running game. He career caught stealing percentage is 24% and in 2018 it was only 10%. In addition to playing catcher, Chirinos also has some limited experience at first and third base.
Chirinos does not provide the Milwaukee Brewers with the same offensive and defensive production as Yasmani Grandal, but he might be a capable, relatively inexpensive, one year option if the team can’t bring Grandal back. The Brewers seem to like hitters that have power and maintain a high on-base percentage. Chirinos seems to fit that preference quite nicely.