With a need for a potential third-string catcher, the Cleveland Indians signed veteran free agent Matt Treanor to a minor league deal on Tuesday.
Treanor, 37, might be most well known for being the husband of Olympic volleyball champ Misty May-Treanor. But he’s stayed around in the majors for quite a while as a somewhat serviceable backup. In his nine-year career, he has played in 468 games with a .221/.313/.305 offensive line. In 2012, he appeared in 36 contest for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He missed all of last season after left knee surgery.
With Yan Gomes set to take over everyday catching duties and Carlos Santana requesting to take grounders at third base, this was a likely move to give some veteran a shot for backup duty. Down the stretch last year, former Indian Kelly Shoppach was on the 40-man roster but appeared in just one game. Lou Marson was let go in the latest series of roster cuts.
Logically, Treanor won’t see too much playing time in 2014 even if he does make the MLB team. But with his non-roster invitation to Major League spring training camp, he could eventually spend some time in Triple-A Columbus or fill in if any injuries occur. Again, this is a zero-risk move with very minimal upside in case of emergency.