The San Francisco Giants dealt catcher Rob Brantly to the Yankees recently, in exchange for cash considerations. Brantly, who was part of the Opening Day roster, was designated for assignment earlier this season and had been at the alternate camp in Sacramento. The Giants signed Brantly to a Minor League deal in the offseason, and it seemed like he would fight Tyler Heineman for the right to back up Buster Posey, unless the Giants started the year with Joey Bart on the active roster. Then all the 2020 madness happened, the season was postponed, Posey opted out of the restart, and Brantly found himself on the roster, planning to split duties with Heineman.
The Detroit Tigers drafted Brantly in the third round of the 2010 Major League Baseball Draft and he made his MLB debut in 2012. He played for the Philadelphia Phillies, Miami Marlins and Chicago White Sox before heading to the San Francisco Giants. Before beginning his professional career, Brantly played high school baseball at Chaparral High School and college baseball for the University of California Riverside Highlanders.
This season Brantly only got into one game and went 0-3. As soon as Chadwick Tromp was healthy, Brantly was designated for assignment. After clearing waivers, he was reassigned to the alternate training site in Sacramento, and with the Giants favoring Heineman, Brantly’s path back to the big leagues was going to be tough during such an uncertain shortened season. When Bart was promoted, Heineman was optioned, and thus became the first catcher in line should Bart or Tromp suffer an injury.
Brantly was the team’s fourth catcher, and that is a hard role to have, especially with Aramis Garcia nearing a return from injury. The Giants also have veteran Chris Herrmann and rookie Patrick Bailey at the Alternate Training Site, so they have plenty of catchers to work with the pitchers in the player pool.
The 31-year-old Brantly, a career .228 hitter in six seasons, will join former Murrieta Valley Nighthawk, Tyler Wade, in the organization and will provide catching depth for the Yankees. Brantly has already reported to the team’s alternate training site to begin his work with the Bronx Bombers.
With the 2020 MLB trade deadline now in the rearview mirror, what you see on big league rosters is what you’ll get as baseball takes its turn into the home stretch.
JP Raineri can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.