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Hello, My Name Is Tuffy Gosewisch

Tuffy's role in 2014 was to be the back-up for Miguel Montero, and that is what he did.

How this works

Every other day, from now through to Christmas, we'll open up discussion on a particular player who made a meaningful contribution to the 2014 Diamondbacks. [I've drawn the line at 125 PA or 20 innings] There will be two sections. Firstly, a poll where you rate them from 5 ("Highly satisfied") down to 1 ("Very dissatisfied"): it's entirely up to you what criteria you use for the number. Secondly, the comments below, where you can talk about the reasons for your vote, etc. Things to discuss include, but are not limited to:

  • Pre-season expectations
  • 2014 performance: strengths and weaknesses, etc.
  • Health and other mitigating factors
  • How they'll help the team in 2015, their role, etc.

Three days down the line, we'll collate the votes, calculate a final average score, and write up the consensus of SnakePit thought into an appraisal. Here is a quick overview of today's candidate for your consideration.

Additional bonus! Going forward. we'll also have a "Comment of the Thread" for the appraisal, so please rec the comments you find insightful, funny, or whatever.

Tuffy Gosewisch - C

  • DOB: 08/17/1983
  • 2014 Salary: $502,000
  • 2014 Performance: 41 games/.225 BA/1 HR/7 RBI/.553 OPS/53 OPS+
  • 2014 Value: -0.1 bWAR/ 0.1 fWAR

I can't be too hard on a guy whose job is providing support for a long-time starter. Tuffy wasn't asked to be a hero, he just needed to exist with catcher's gear and not doing anything too stupid.

Okay, maybe that undersells what a back-up catcher does, but Tuffy's season is probably better understood in comparison to Montero's. Miggy had a kind-of bounce-back year, going from 0.9 fWAR to 1.2. But Montero was still near the bottom of all the catchers with over 400 PA in terms of producing runs (of the 23, he ranked 20th in wRC+) Finding one catcher to hit is hard enough, so Tuffy shouldn't necessarily be docked for his lack of production. But the D-Backs had to give up any kind of offense from the position to give Montero a rest.

If a catcher can't hit, he better be able to play defense and handle a pitching staff. The latter is more difficult to measure, but Tuffy did a decent job on defense. He was better at catching basestealers (not that that is difficult to do in this stage of Miggy's career). Unfortunately, more advanced fielding data isn't available yet, but Tuffy seemed at least competent on defense.

Tuffy's 2014 can be probably summed up with two facts, though: he was a backup for a workhorse starter, and he was cheap. Whether he will be the backup again next year remains to be seen, but he didn't do anything to automatically preclude him from the discussion, and with role players that's sometimes all you can ask.