Catcher Profile: Yan Gomes

Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Getting the nod for a starting gig behind the dish for the Indians in 2014, Yan Gomes could be a nice pick-up late in drafts this year...or could he?

After a two-month trial run as the Indians' primary backstop in 2013, Yan Gomes has gotten the green light for full-time duty behind the plate in 2014. Considered by many to be a better defensive catcher than his predecessor, Carlos Santana, the question that is pressing for fantasy owners is: What will Gomes bring to the table offensively? Let's check under the hood and find out:

Yan Gomes (Sao Paulo, Brazil) is a 26-year old right-handed hitter who was drafted in the 10th round by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2009 and was traded to the Indians along with utilityman Mike Aviles for Esmil Rogers in 2012. He has compiled a .287/.345/.484 slash line with an almost 3:1 K/BB ratio in over 1200 PAs (5 seasons) in the minors. In 2012 he was ranked as the Indians' 27th best prospect by Baseball America, and at the same time had his best year as a minor leaguer, slashing a .328/.380/.557 line with 13HR and 29 doubles in the hitter-friendly PCL.

In the majors, thus far, he has compiled a decent .271/.324/.453 line in a mere 433 PAs, hitting 11 HRs last year, getting his K-rate down to 20% from 28% in 2012, and flashing slightly above-average wOBA (.326) and wRC+ (108).

His batted ball data suggest a more-or-less average player (as does his plate discipline data), and it's possible that just a small regression in his pop-up rate will help his LD% (17.8%) creep up to league average (about 20%). He has an above-average HR/FB rate so far and his power has translated at the MLB level as well (career .182 ISO). His batted ball distance comes in at #118 overall, just a few ticks behind Wilin Rosario-and everyone seems to like his power output all right.

However, this is a small sample size so there's no telling what Gomes will do over the course of a season. His .342 BABIP is probably not sustainable over an entire year so expect the batting average to sit more comfortably around .260 or so as BABIP regression comes into play. He strikes out too much (never been below 21%), and he walks too little (career 5.5%) to be able to help in the OBP department. While the ISO, batted ball distance, and HR/FB numbers are nice, there are two things working against him regarding his power:

1. He's a dead pull hitter who likes the ball high and inside (vs. LHP), or low and inside (vs. RHP). All but two of his HRs went to left field last year. As the book gets around on this guy it'll be easy to pound him with stuff outside, which he'll probably offer at because of his below-average O-Swing rate of 36%, and

2. Progressive Field is generally known as a hitter's ballpark, but last year it played the 2nd toughest in the league by giving up HRs to right handers (only Pittsburgh played tougher).

Considering he really doesn't steal bases, will probably hit at or near the bottom of the order, and knowing that Carlos Santana is still able to catch if needed (which could cut into his ABs), I don't see much more than replacement level at catcher this year for Yan Gomes, despite his defensive prowess behind the dish. I wouldn't overpay for Gomes' services based on a nice show in the 2nd half of the season. I agree with ZiPS, more or less, and see a final line of .260/.310/.430 with 10-12 HR, 45 runs, and 45 RBI. For me Yan is more Ya(w)n than anything in 2014.

All data courtesy of:

fangraphs.com

baseball-reference.com

baseballamerica.com

Trending Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Fake Teams

You must be a member of Fake Teams to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Fake Teams. You should read them.

Join Fake Teams

You must be a member of Fake Teams to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Fake Teams. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker