We are holding off on our backup catcher outlook to see if an official announcement is made. So, as a result, today we are bringing you likely the last man to make the roster out of Spring, Joey Gathright.
Gathright isn’t competing directly with anyone for a roster spot, but the Cubs have to decide whether or not they want an extra infielder on the roster. If they decide to go that route, Joey won’t make the club out of camp.
However, the Pinkie feels strongly that Gathright will be the Cubs’ late inning defensive replacement/pinch runner and they will do without the extra utility man.
Joey G was drafted by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in 2001 and made his MLB debut June 25, 2004. He then played two and a half years with Tampa Bay before spending the last two and a half as a Royal in Kansas City.
When I think of Joey Gathright, one word comes to mind: speed. He didn’t even play baseball his senior season of high school, opting instead for football and track. Reports have clocked him at 6.1 seconds in the 60-yard dash and 3.3 seconds from home to 1st on a bunt.
Imagine that type of speed coupled with the lush infield grass at Wrigley… One could envision a ton of infield hits.
Given his freakish speed, Joey should be a great defensive asset to the team. In 2006, Gathright led all major league outfielders in range factor (3.06). However, last year for whatever reason, his range factor fell to 2.53, behind all but one center field starter in the league.
Also, Joey’s got the hops to take away a few homers when needed…
The Pinkie’s 2009 Projections for Joey G: