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Diamondbacks to Sign Stephen Vogt

It looks like the Diamondbacks have found their backup catcher for 2020 and it isn’t a return of Alex Avila.

Pittsburgh Pirates v San Francisco Giants Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Mike Hazen and the Diamondbacks have made their first major move of the offseason. They have signed catcher/outfielder, Stephen Vogt to a one-year contract with a vesting option for 2021. Vogt will receive $3 million in 2019. The Diamondbacks will be Vogt’s fifth Major League team since he made his MLB debut with Tampa Bay back in 2012. Vogt, who just turned 35 at the beginning of this month, played catcher, first base, and left field for the San Francisco Giants in 2018.

Vogt hit .263/.314/.490 in 2019 for an OPS+ of 111. While his glove and on-base abilities were not quite up to the level that Alex Avila provided the team, Vogt did manage to stay healthy and also provides something Avila is unable to - positional flexibility. Unless the team decides to once again run with three catchers as part of the 2020 roster, it would seem that the team’s catching situation is now set for the upcoming season. With the health concerns surrounding both Steven Souza, Jr. and David Peralta, it is fair to assume that Vogt will see plenty of time in left in 2020 as well. While Vogt does not possess a typical corner outfield bat, his slightly above average overall bat and solid average defense could combine to make Vogt a sound 5th outfield type that can help keep legs fresh throughout the season. Overall, it feels like Vogt should expect another season’s workload like what he saw in 2019 where he played in 99 games and accumulated 280 plate appearances, though he may get a few more looks at the plate if he manages to start 60 games behind the dish in backing up Carson Kelly.