White Sox claim catcher Brantly off waivers
Backstop hit .255 for Marlins' Triple-A affiliate in 2014
SAN DIEGO -- The White Sox now have five catchers on their 40-man roster after claiming Rob Brantly off waivers from the Marlins on Monday.
That number alone would indicate a move to come, although the Brantly addition certainly wasn't done with a trade in mind.
"Everything is a prelude to a possible move," White Sox general manager Rick Hahn said. "No matter what else we were talking about we would have put in a claim on Brantly. You have a left-handed-hitting catcher who is Major League ready and provides us depth at a premium position. That's an asset.Winter Meetings: Monday through Thursday in San Diego
"We like that Brantly is left-handed, is still young, his receiving skills started solid, regressed a little bit and actually improved in recent months according to our reports. He has options left, so he provides us depth if he's not on the big league club. He's an interesting guy. We like having that balance and depth at that position."
Brantly played some left field during the instructional league, but that was aimed more at finding a way to get his bat in the Marlins' lineup. The 25-year-old hit .255 with four homers and 37 RBIs over 101 games last season with Triple-A New Orleans, but he did not play in the Majors.
During the 2012-13 seasons, the Marlins' Opening Day catcher from '13 hit .235 with four homers and 26 RBIs over 98 games for the Marlins. He originally was selected by Detroit in the third round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of California-Riverside and played in the Futures Game in 2012 before being traded by Detroit to Miami on July 23, 2012, as part of a five-player deal that sent infielder Omar Infante and pitcher Anibal Sanchez to the Tigers.
Monday's move brings the White Sox 40-man roster to 40, with Brantly joining Tyler Flowers, Adrian Nieto, Josh Phegley and Kevan Smith behind the plate. With Flowers entrenched as the starter and Nieto potentially targeted for a full season with Triple-A Charlotte, Phegley could be the catcher on the move. He has hit .316 and .274 over his last two years at Charlotte, with 38 combined homers and 116 RBIs.
"Five is a big number of catchers on the 40-man," Hahn said. "So we'll address that over the course of the next several weeks or so."