Tigers bolster catching ranks, acquire Double-A prospect Jhon Nunez from Red Sox
Detroit – The Tigers continue to build organizational depth at the catcher position.
On Friday they acquired 25-year-old, switch-hitting catcher Jhon Nunez from Boston in exchange for left-handed pitcher Matt Hall, whom they designated for assignment last week.
Nunez, who spent 2019 at Double-A Portland, was an Eastern League All-Star in the first half and finished with a .280./.353/.412 slash line. He also threw out 42 percent of would-be base stealers.
He will be one of eight catchers invited to big league camp next month. Besides Austin Romine, Grayson Greiner, Jake Rogers and Eric Haase, who are on the 40-man roster, Nunez will join non-roster invitees Kade Scivicque (finished 2019 at Triple-A Toledo), Brady Policelli (finished at High-A Lakeland last season) and Cooper Johnson (sixth-round pick in 2019 draft).
Also in the catching pipeline are two players the Tigers drafted in 2017 – Joey Morgan (third round) and Sam McMillan (fifth round). Morgan got to Triple-A last season and McMillan spent the bulk of the year at Low-A West Michigan.
Hall posted a 9.48 ERA with a 2.01 WHIP in two short stints with the Tigers in 2018 and 2019. But he also had a 24-percent strikeout rate last season for the Tigers after striking out 106 in 86.2 innings at Toledo.
He has an above-average curve ball with an extremely high spin rate (2,927 rpm) that generated a 39-percent swing-and-miss rate at the big-league level last season.