The Reds introduced Monday that they’ve signed catcher/infielder P.J. Higgins to a minor league contract. The Bledsoe Company consumer will obtain an invite to huge league camp in spring coaching.
Higgins, 30, logged Main League time with the Cubs in 2021-22, batting a mixed .210/.291/.348 with six residence runs, 11 doubles and a triple in 254 journeys to the plate. Modest as that manufacturing could also be, Higgins has spent elements of 4 seasons on the Triple-A stage and clobbered opposing pitchers at that stage, posting a .318/.401/.499 slash in 672 general plate appearances.
Past the manufacturing on the plate within the higher minors, Higgins has some quiet versatility that might assist him ultimately win a spot on Cincinnati’s bench. He’s primarily been a catcher in his skilled profession, however the Cubs have additionally given him 867 profession innings at first base, 584 innings at third base, 93 innings at second base and even 37 frames at shortstop. If he can in the end ship something inside a stone’s throw of league-average manufacturing on the plate, he might make for an fascinating bench participant — significantly for a Reds membership that carried three catchers for a lot of the 2023 season (Tyler Stephenson, Luke Maile, Curt Casali).
As issues stand, Stephenson and the lately re-signed Maile determine to deal with appreciable work behind the plate. That mentioned, Stephenson was extra productive on the plate when he was enjoying first base or serving as a chosen hitter than when he was catching — and his glovework behind the dish additionally graded out fairly poorly. It wouldn’t be all that stunning if the Reds once more go for three catchers, with Stephenson spending ample time at first and DH. Higgins might doubtlessly issue into that equation if he impresses subsequent spring. He hasn’t drawn significantly robust defensive grades in restricted motion within the majors, although Baseball America touted him as no less than a mean defender at catcher earlier than his MLB debut.