D-backs add veteran catcher Stewart

August 30th, 2018

LOS ANGELES -- The D-backs added to their catching depth Thursday when they acquired veteran from the Braves in exchange for cash considerations.
Stewart, 36, was recently designated for assignment and outrighted to Triple-A Gwinnett. When a player's contract is designated for assignment -- often abbreviated "DFA" -- that player is immediately removed from his club's 40-man roster. Within seven days of the transaction (had been 10 days under the 2012-16 Collective Bargaining Agreement), the player can either be traded or placed on irrevocable outright waivers.
Stewart will be added to the Triple-A Reno roster, but he is all but certain to join the D-backs when rosters expand on Saturday.
"He's a veteran catcher, always been an elite pitch framer, a good thrower, very intelligent catcher, good feel for game calling," assistant general manager Jared Porter said. "We felt like it was a good guy to acquire."
When Stewart is called up, the D-backs will have four catchers on the roster, including Jeff Mathis, Alex Avila and John Ryan Murphy.
By adding another catcher, manager Torey Lovullo will have more flexibility to pinch-hit for his catchers, or use one of his catchers as a pinch-hitter.
"It's no mystery. I do maneuver and pinch-hit for the catchers from time to time," Lovullo said. "Pinch-hitting is hard, so I obviously respect both sides of that equation. But when we do pinch-hit, you insert your second catcher, and at times you may need to pinch-run for him late."
Stewart, who will be a free agent at the end of the season, will need to be added to the 40-man roster in order to be called up.
Speaking of September rosters
Outfielder , who has been out since July 5 with a strained right groin, is scheduled to play five innings on Friday night for Reno as he begins a rehab assignment.
Dyson's speed and defensive ability could be helpful to the D-backs in September.
"Before we left, he said he was feeling good and he said, 'I want to be a part of this. I want to participate,'" Lovullo said. "I love that. I feel strongly knowing that he's going to do all that he can to come back here and join us in some way."
Every little bit helps
The D-backs will not hesitate to call up as many players as they need for the stretch run.
"It's September baseball," Lovullo said. "You've got to have everything covered, and you don't want to have any missing parts if you're trying to do something to help yourself win a game."