Molina gets exclusive rights with Drabek
By MIKE RUTSEY, QMI Agency
|Blue Jays pitcher Kyle Drabek (left) talks with catcher Jose Molina during practice at the team's spring training facility in Dunedin, Florida on February 17, 2011. (MIKE CASSESE/Reuters)
BRADENTON, Fla. — It appears as if veteran Jose Molina has gained exclusive catching rights with another starter.
Last season Molina tagged up with Brandon Morrow for 20 of his 27 starts and on Wednesday, prior to the Jays game against the Pirates, manager John Farrell suggested that the 35-year-old Molina will do the same with Kyle Drabek if the rookie right-hander makes the team as expected.
“I know Jose has done a great job with him and he’s matched up with him again today,” Farrell said. “Early on for a specific reason, and to just teach him along the way what his stuff, how it can play against major-league hitters.”
Farrell was asked if Drabek would benefit more by having Molina behind the plate, such as Morrow did in 2010.
“That’s one arrangement,” Farrell said. ‘We don’t want to say that certain pitchers can’t pitch with other catchers behind the plate but I think you’re looking at two pitchers with similar stuff and to make sure that they don’t go away from their secondary stuff and become so reliant on their fastball and just become hard, hard, hard. Sometimes a power pitcher’s mentality can revert to that throwing mindset. That’s where some of that (having Molina) can be beneficial.”
If that’s the case, rookie catcher J.P. Arencibia would catch three of five days with the other two going to Molina.
If Molina can help Drabek as much as he did Morrow, look out.