Philadelphia Phillies Add Brian Schneider

Adam BernacchioAnalyst IIIDecember 1, 2009

PHOENIX - AUGUST 11:  Catcher Brian Schneider #23 of the New York Mets in action during the major league baseball game against against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on August 11, 2009 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Diamondbacks defeated the Mets 6-2.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
It’s a great time to be a back-up player in the majors these days.
So far this offseason, we have seen Andruw Jones, Omar Vizquel, and Alex Cora sign contracts. Now we can add another back-up player to the list of players who have signed a contract.

According to Todd Zolecki , the Philadelphia Phillies have signed Brian Schneider to a two-year, $2.75 million contract to be their back-up catcher to Carlos Ruiz. Schneider spent the last two years with the New York Mets.

When the Mets traded Lastings Milledge to the Washington Nationals for Schneider and Ryan Church before the 2007 season, I thought it was a good trade for the Mets.

Milledge was the Mets top young player at the time, but he is a clown and I have seen hundreds of Milledge types in my day. The Mets were getting back two professional ball players and with Schneider, they were getting a serviceable major league catcher.

The Mets got what they expected out of Schneider in 2008. Schneider hit .257 with nine home runs and threw out 33 percent of the runners trying to steal against him.

However, in 2009 like most of the Mets players, Schneider suffered through an injury plagued season. Schneider missed 41 games with a lower back injury and his average plummeted to .218 and his OPS dipped to .627.

I like this signing by the Phillies. Would I have given him a two-year deal? It’s debatable.

Schneider is four years younger than Paul Bako and three years younger than Chris Coste (Coste recently signed with the Mets), who were the Phillies’ back-up catchers last season. Schneider’s .345 caught stealing percentage in 2009 is also better than both of them.

Of course knowing the Mets luck with players once they leave Flushing, Schneider will hit .280 with the Phillies and throw out 50 percent of the baserunners trying to run against him.

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