|After an injury-plagued, three-level season in 2012, Leon took a decided
step backwards on offense in 2013 — going from an .856 OPS to .542
while playing in only 95 games. Defensively, his numbers were similar,
which is critical because to even realize his ceiling as a backup, he
cannot afford any diminishment of those skills. His inclusion is largely
based on how thin the position is within the organization.
|The injury to Spencer Kieboom opened the door for Severino, who was
indeed challenged with the jump from the GCL to Low-A as a 19-y.o.
He again showed modest improvements with the bat, showing a bit more
power and striking out less. Unfortunately, he also took fewer walks.
Against more elite baserunners, his CS% dropped from 43 to 40, which
is still very good, but made more errors. Still, folks who’ve seen him
vouch for his defensive prowess, likening him to backstops like Leon.
|Admittedly, this is a stretch. While the Nats didn’t draft him, they did
talk the 21-y.o. into leaving Hofstra university as a junior to start his
pro career as an NDFA last July and then played him nearly everyday for
the final six weeks of the Auburn Doubleday season. His offensive numbers
were good (.253/.337/.354) given those circumstances and defensively he
threw out 8-of-16 would-be base thieves while committing just two errors.
|He was sent stateside after two seasons in the DSL, but the “other 19-y.o.
catcher” acquitted himself well as part of the 2013 G-Nat juggernaut. Unlike
Severino, his offensive numbers declined slightly with the exceptions of BA
and K rate. After making eight errors in his first season, Read has made two
since for a career FA of .988. A challenge of Hagerstown seems less likely
than Severino a year ago, but obviously is possible.