When the Colorado Rockies didn’t land a big-name free agent in the offseason to boost their catching, there was a lot of talk (including from us) that the Rockies had made a big mistake. Well, so far, Tony Wolters is showing that he is more than capable of rising to the challenge and becoming the catcher Colorado needs behind the dish.
Wolters entered Friday’s action with a .288/.355/.379 slash line and already had six extra-base hits. Compare that to the 11 he totaled in all of 2018 and you can see that “Tony Two Bags” as Rockies Twitter loves to call him is on a good pace in that department.
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Can Wolters keep that high batting average going after hitting just .170 in 182 at-bats last season? That’s the question still to be answered. However, there is no doubt that Wolters has improved as a hitter and has risen to become the top catcher on the Colorado depth chart. When Chris Iannetta returns from injury, how much of Wolters’ play will eat into his playing time? That remains to be seen, but it’s likely to be noticeable.
Wolters has also proven his defensive abilities have risen in the offseason as well. He’s long gotten kudos for his framing work and communication skills but is also cutting down would-be base-stealers at an all-time high (currently with 41.67 percent cutdown rate, good enough to be tied for ninth in Major League Baseball).
We weren’t so sure heading into the season, but count us as believers in the power of the mustache now.