Rangers Attempt to Fortify Catching by Signing Gimenez | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Rangers Attempt to Fortify Catching by Signing Gimenez

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    Closer Shawn Tolleson is congratulated by catcher Chris Gimenez after defeating the Seattle Mariners 9-6 at Safeco Field Sept. 8 in Seattle. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

    The Rangers have catchers. Which doesn’t mean they don’t have a catching problem.

    I wrote recently that the team has lacked an elite catcher since the days of Pudge Rodriguez, and Wednesday’s signing of Chris Gimenez does little to solve the big-picture riddle.

    Gimenez signed a one-year, $975,000 contract, to essentially be the backup to starter Robinson Chirinos. I know, yawn.

    The Rangers could still pursue a front-line catcher at the Winter Meetings. But this signing seems to indicate that Plan A is going with the same tandem that finished last season behind the plate.

    Not that Gimenez was awful by any means. Called up from the minors in late July, he hit .255 with five homers and 14 RBI in 32 starts. More importantly, he became Cole Hamels’ personal catcher down the stretch and into the playoffs, teaming for a 7-0 record.

    Problem is that he’s already 32 and has never started more than 40 games at catcher in the big leagues. Chirinos has never started more than 80 games. In other words, they are not big-time, full-time catchers.

    Bottom line: The Rangers have addressed their catching problem. I’m just not convinced they’ve yet found the answer.

    A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.