Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

For One Night, Third-String Catcher Erik Kratz Was The Pirates' Best Pitcher

Pitchers dinging and donging at the plate is old news; let’s honor some position players who can deal from the mound.

Earlier this month, the Pirates acquired 36-year-old, third-string catcher Erik Kratz, who started the year with San Diego, was later traded to and cut from the Astros, and most recently played for the Angels’ Triple A affiliate. So far, that’s working out pretty well for the Pirates.

On Monday night, Kratz’s unlikely solo shot (his second of the year) off none other than Madison Bumgarner gave his team a 1-0 win over the dominant Giants. And last night, he threw a scoreless ninth—which is more than can be said for any of the Pirates’ other pitchers, who failed to prevent the 15-4 massacre.


In his second pitching appearance this season, Kratz mixed mediocre knuckleballs with surprisingly successful mid-70s fastishballs:

(Mobile users can watch here.)

How does it feel to be sent back to the dugout by a fellow position player?


Since it seems Kratz’s catching career is petering out, perhaps it’s time for him to go the Dan Johnson route and stay on the mound for good.

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