The Detroit Tigers pulled off a trade earlier this week, acquiring catcher and 2020 Gold Glove winner Tucker Barnhart from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for third-base prospect Nick Quintana.
“Coming into this offseason, we knew that catcher was a priority position for us,” Tigers GM Al Avila said Wednesday after the deal was completed. “Tucker's name came up many times as an attractive option for our ballclub as someone who is a real plus defender, knows how to lead a pitching staff and is a solid contributor from the batter's box.”
And according to Cincinnatit's Tyler Stephenson, the Tigers are getting a major asset in the 31 year old Barnhart, who hit .247 with seven home runs and 48 RBIs in 116 games played last season.
“He's got two Gold Gloves in the big leagues and one in the minor leagues,” Stephenson said Wednesday, explaining Barnhart's impact on his development. “You're looking at one of the best defensive catchers in baseball.”
Barnhart put his skills to good use behind the plate in 2020, helping Cincinnati's pitching staff to an impressive 3.89 ERA (eighth-best in MLB) and 9.9 WAR (second-best in MLB).
“Obviously, there's what he can do on the defensive side, but controlling your pitching staff and helping their development, take it all in,” Stephenson said. “You're getting a class act and one of the best in baseball.”
– – Quotes via The Detroit Free Press Link – –