Brewers spring training standout catcher finally added to active roster

Meanwhile, another Milwaukee backstop hits the injured list.
Mar 14, 2024; Peoria, Arizona, USA; Milwaukee Brewers catcher Eric Haase (13) throws to second base against the Seattle Mariners during the second inning at Peoria Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 14, 2024; Peoria, Arizona, USA; Milwaukee Brewers catcher Eric Haase (13) throws to second base against the Seattle Mariners during the second inning at Peoria Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports / Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
facebooktwitterreddit

Back in the spring, the Milwaukee Brewers had a bit of a roster conundrum. While most teams carry two catchers into the regular season, the Crew had three with a real claim to a spot on the 2024 Opening Day roster.

William Contreras would of course again be the starter at catcher. The Brewers had also signed Gary Sanchez in late February to be his backup. But a couple months before bringing on Sanchez, Milwaukee had signed a fellow free agent in Eric Haase to fill the void left by the departed Victor Caratini.

When Sanchez was signed, it was all but a foregone conclusion that he and Contreras would form the 1-2 punch at backstop for the Brewers. He had a better recent offensive profile than Haase, who struggled quite a bit in 2023. Yet that didn't stop Haase from competing his tail off to still earn a roster spot for the upcoming season.

Haase ended up being one of the very best performers for the Brewers in Cactus League play, but the roster math just didn't work in his favor and he would be designated for assignment and be sent outright to Triple-A Nashville. There he kept at his craft until the time finally came to rejoin the major league club.

On Wednesday, the Brewers selected the contract of spring training standout catcher Eric Haase.

Since starting the year in Triple-A, Haase has excelled, slashing .279/.367/.503 over the course of 41 games played. He is also tied for second on the Sounds with nine home runs and is fifth on the team with 31 runs batted in.

That's nothing compared to his scorching hot spring, though. Granted it was in a smaller 18-game sample size, but the 31-year-old slahed a crazy .395/.388/.738 with five homers and 14 runs batted in. Had he been anything but a catcher, he would've almost certainly been on the Brewers roster to start the season.

To add a catcher to the roster, that generally means one is departing from it and that is exactly the case with Milwaukee. At the same time Haase's move was announced, it was also revealed that Sanchez, who was scratched from Tuesday's game with a calf issue, would be placed on the IL due to that same injury.

That only opened an active roster spot for Haase, though. To make room on the 40-man roster, pitcher Joe Ross, who had recently had a setback in his own quest to return from injury, was transferred from the 10-day IL to the 60-day.

The Brewers start a big series against the rival Cubs this weekend and Haase will be along for the ride. Perhaps he will even get a chance to show that his spring and minor league performances were no fluke.

manual