According to sources, Mirabelli is close to accepting a one-year deal from the team that will pay him in the range of a guaranteed $550,000 to serve as backup to Jason Varitek. The guaranteed portion of the deal is down from the $750,000 Mirabelli earned last season, but incentives allow the catcher to reach an approximate $1 million ceiling that he had last year. ...That's for damn sure.
With Varitek entering the final year of his contract, the Sox have serious long-term catching concerns beyond this season.
It's a fact: back-up catchers cannot hit. In the last two seasons, Mirabelli, 37, has had OPS+s of 51 and 63 -- which is actually pretty much middle of the pack. By comparison, last year's two MFY back-ups were Jose Molina (61 OPS+, career 64 OPS+) and Wil Nieves (10 OPS+). Still, I was hoping we'd seen the last of the Stud Who Formerly Hit Bombs.
A SoSH exchange:
DJnVa: Maybe he'll get lucky and the balls will find gaps this year.
HighHeat: Well, a ball needs to be put in play before it can find a gap, but I like your optimism.