NEW YORK -- Brian Snitker is well aware how fortunate he is to have a pair of catchers in Tyler Flowers and Kurt Suzuki that have combined to be one of the most formidable offensive tandems behind the plate in all of baseball this season.In between Atlanta's doubleheader against the
NEW YORK -- Brian Snitker is well aware how fortunate he is to have a pair of catchers in Tyler Flowers and Kurt Suzuki that have combined to be one of the most formidable offensive tandems behind the plate in all of baseball this season.
In between Atlanta's doubleheader against the Mets in Queens on Monday, which featured a 9-2 victory in Game 1 and a 3-2 loss in Game 2, the Braves' manager was informed that after Flowers' two-run home run, the duo had now combined for 30 home runs on the season.
"Isn't that something?" Snitker said.
Flowers finished Game 1 of the doubleheader 1-for-3 with two walks (one intentional). Suzuki was the only Braves player to reach base twice in Game 2, going 2-for-4 with a double.
Monday was a perfect window into the two solid seasons for each of them. Suzuki's slash line reads .278/.380/.452, while Flowers' own is .285/.380/.452. Their combined OPS is a solid 1.708.
"It's a nice little thing for us to have," Snitker added.
The Braves have recently rewarded the play of their catchers by extending Suzuki to a one-year, $3.5 million deal for 2018 over the weekend. The team is also expected to exercise Flowers' option for next season.
The offensive production may be their strong suit, but don't count out their defensive contributions this season either, especially the improvements of Flowers. He threw out two baserunners in Game 1, marking the fourth time in his career he threw out two runners in one game. The previous instances occurred on April 19, 2012, against Baltimore, May 31, 2014, against San Diego, and Aug. 18, 2016, against Texas.
That made Flowers 15-for-65 on baserunners caught stealing this year, a big jump up from the paltry 2-for-62 ratio from last year. Flowers said he was happy to see results in the caught-stealing department, but also gave credit to starter Lucas Sims and his teammates for getting tags down.
"He gave me a chance on both of them," Flowers said. "Half the credit right there is having an opportunity. Guys made good tags on both plays, too."
Chris Bumbaca is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York.