When the 2015-2016 season came to a close, it was apparent that the Atlanta Braves had many holes to fill. None of those were bigger, though, than the catcher position. What Braves fans didn’t expect was a pair of catchers who are currently combining to lead the National League in batting average at .309.
After many rumors were thrown out during the offseason, the Braves failed to make a big splash, only signing veteran catcher Kurt Suzuki. The plan was to pair him with Tyler Flowers, leaving many Braves fans unhappy with the lack of moves. But the decision to spend money elsewhere has proven to be wise for the Braves thus far.
Together, the pair of Flowers and Suzuki not only lead the National League in average, but rank 2nd in the MLB. They also rank 1st in on-base percentage (.422), 3rd in RBI (27), 8th in hits (42) and even rank first in HBPs (12). That last stat definitely helps the OBP.
While Flowers is pulling more of the weight in the batting average category, posting a league leading .366 average, each have racked up 14 RBI, with Suzuki doing so in less at-bats. Flowers is currently leading the league in batting average and OBP, but Suzuki has proven to be the better power bat, while also serving as R.A. Dickey’s primary “knuckleball” catcher.
This production may very well fade out, but it’s definitely a pleasant and welcome surprise to see this type of offense from the catcher position. With catchers needing rest more than most positions, the Braves have not missed a beat when Flowers needs a night off. Braves fans hope this offensive onslaught continues, and the front office is hoping their lack of “splash” moves continues to be right one.