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Kurt Suzuki

The Oakland A's called-up the top catching prospect Kurt Suzuki to take over the back-up duties to Jason Kendall. Given Kendall has been awful so far and is a free agent at the end of this season, Suzuki carries more interest than the typical back-up receiver. On the strength of good plate discipline (~60 BBs) and good contact rates (~86%), he became a prospect to watch. When Kendall's contract situation is considered, Suzuki becomes a player that is likely to be given the opportunity to provide inexpensive ABs at catcher.

His drop-off in AAA is a concern. Across the board, everything has worsened while in the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League this season. Fortunately, the weakness in AL catching makes Suzuki a quality #2.

Year Team Lg Age Level AB XBH HR RBI BB SO AVG OBP SLG CR
2004 Vancouver Nwest 20 A- 175 16 3 31 18 26 0.297 0.394 0.440 85.1%
2005 Stockton Calif 21 A+ 441 43 12 65 63 61 0.277 0.378 0.440 86.2%
2006 Midland Tex 22 AA 376 34 7 55 58 50 0.285 0.392 0.415 86.7%
2007 Sacramento PCL 23 AAA 211 12 3 27 21 41 0.280 0.351 0.365 80.6%