Oakland Athletics’ Sean Murphy (12) follows through on a solo home run swing as Texas Rangers catcher Meibrys Viloria looks on in the first inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington on Wed Aug 17, 2022 (AP News photo file)
Sean Murphy, Last of The Mohicans
That’s Amaury News and Commentary
By Amaury Pi-González
OAKLAND–Since they began play in Oakland in 1968, the As’ had some terrific catchers, one of them was Gene Tenace who hit 4 home runs in the 1972 World Series and won the MVP, he was part of the A’s dynasty (1972-73-74). During the glory years of the 1980’s Terry Steinbach, a three-time All Star and the MVP of the 1988 All Star Game, a clutch hitter who drove in seven runs during the A’s 1989 World Series sweep against the San Francisco Giants, was very productive and in my opinion underrated.
Ramón Hernández who was one of six All Star catchers in Oakland A’s history also played the backstop for the A’s. Most recently, and although he only played in Oakland for a brief time, one of the most popular receivers, Stephen Vogt, who started his career with a home run and ended it with a home run in his final at bat this past season., Vogt became the third player in MLB history to have that type of home-run-book-end of a career. Of course, we cannot forget Ray Fosse for the A’s behind the plate, as well as very popular radio and television commentator for the team.
Currently still an Oakland A’s, Sean Murphy, named one of the Top-10 best catchers in MLB. He is the last one of the most recent star players that have left the A’s the last couple of seasons, mostly notably; Chris Bassitt, Frankie Montás, Matt Olson, Matt Chapman, just to mention a few.
While the A’s traded their first baseman (Olson) and third baseman (Chapman) and their shortstop Elvis Andrus was signed by the White Sox, right after he was released by the A’s.Murphy is the only regular A’s on the infield that remains. At least a half-dozen teams are interested in Murphy’s services.
One of the best candidates involving a trade for Murphy are the San Diego Padres, under the direction of ex-A’s manager Bob Melvin (who was also a catcher) is probably the #1 contender for Murphy. Also in the mix are the Chicago White Sox, St Louis Cardinals, and Boston Red Sox.
Murphy was a nominee for the AL 2022 Gold Glove Award, won by Yankee’s José Trevino. He will be missed if he changed jerseys this off-season, but we can say that of most of the players that have left Oakland recently.
Because the A’s are strong and young in the catching position, now with Shea Langeliers, 25 years old, who became a strong #2 catcher behind Murphy this past season, and will probably be their #1 catcher next season, plus 21 year olds in the minors like Daniel Susac and Tyler Soderstrom, it is likely they will depart with Murphy this winter and acquire more prospects and maybe one established veteran.
Why do I say this? Because there is a precedent, this is what the A’s have been famous for, especially when rebuilding. So why are we going to expect anything but… plus like Casey said.
“You have to have a catcher because if you don’t you’re likely to have a lot of passed balls”. – Casey Stengel.
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