33-Year-Old Catcher – Free Agent
2014 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
There was no outlook written for Ronny Paulino in 2014. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
Ronny Paulino Contract Information:
Paulino signed a minor league contract with the Tigers in November of 2013.
Paulino has been released by the Tigers, due mostly to the fact that he's currently serving a 100-game suspension for violating the minor league drug prevention and treatment program, the Toledo Blade's J. Wagner reports.
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Ronny Paulino: MLB Games Played By Position
Ronny Paulino Split Stats (View Full Split Stats)
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Ronny Paulino: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Ronny Paulino.
Paulino was signed by the Mets to a one-year deal to serve as a right-handed complement to Josh Thole. He missed the first month while completing a suspension for PED usage and illness, but got off to a strong start driven mainly by an unsustainable BABIP. Paulino crashed back to earth, going just 25-for-124 over the last three months and getting dogged by questions about his defense and work ethic. The Mets non-tendered him in December and he will look to hook on elsewhere to fill a similar part-time platoon role.
John Baker's injury hurt Paulino's 2010 numbers, as he's better suited in a platoon where he only has to face left-handers than as an everyday player. His PED suspension brought a sudden end to his Marlins tenure, though, and he'll pick his career back up with the Mets as Josh Thole's veteran caddy. If New York can make sure he doesn't see much right-handed pitching, he could be a useful second fantasy catcher.
Paulino proved to be an excellent fit as John Baker's backup/platoon partner, smacking left-handed pitchers around at a .290/.343/.458 rate and playing acceptable defense. His fantasy upside is limited, as a Baker injury would get Paulino bulk production at the cost of more average-killing at-bats against righties, but he fits the Marlins' needs (and pocketbook) quite well.
New Pirates manager John Russell told Paulino late in spring training that Ryan Doumit was his starting catcher and Paulino never really recovered. After seeing sporadic time in Pittsburgh, the team finally shipped him out to Triple-A Indianapolis at the beginning of June. Following a first game in which he went 5-for-5, Paulino suffered an ankle injury that cost him most of his summer. Paulino finished 2008 with a .302 batting average in the minors and .212 with Pittsburgh. He'll get a change of scenery after being dealt to the Phillies and could help the big catcher re-start a career that saw him hit .310 as a rookie in 2006.
Paulino's final line doesn't begin to explain the inconsistencies and downright lack of production the bulky catcher experienced in 2007. Following a fine 2006 campaign when Paulino hit a surprising .310, many observers believed the oversized backstop's batting average would drop but his power numbers would increase. In the final analysis, that's exactly what happened but the road was bumpier than Wrigley Field's infield. Paulino got off a .218 start (34-for-156) the first two months of the season, when many fantasy owners likely dropped him. His stance at the plate prevented him from reaching outside corner strikes. Amazingly, he did little to correct his approach but raised his final batting average to .263 by hitting .293 after the All-Star break. His defense ranked among the worst in the league, as relay throws to home plate were commonly dropped and passed balls were the norm. Still, as it stands, the Pirates haven't signed another backstop to compete with Paulino, and Ryan Doumit is even worse defensively, meaning Paulino could start another 130-plus games. If you draft the lumbering catcher, make sure you have a plentiful stock of aspirin.
It wouldn't at all be surprising to see Paulino post more catcher-like numbers, both offensively and defensively, in 2007. As a rookie, the 6-foot-2, 240-pound backstop, who looks a lot more like Albert Pujols than Mike Lavalliere, had Spanky-like power production. Paulino, 25, batted an outstanding .310 in 442 at-bats but hit just six home runs with 55 RBI. Defensively he was a wreck, ranking among the league leaders in errors (11) and passed balls (9), though pitchers seemed comfortable with him behind the plate. Look for his defense to improve in 2007 -- if it doesn't, Ryan Doumit looms.
Paulino is coming off of a fine 2005 campaign that reignited his prospect status. The 25-year-old catcher, who split time between Double-A and Triple-A ball, hit a combined .306 with 19 home runs and 62 RBI. Claimed by the Royals as a Rule 5 player by the Royals in 2003 and then returned, he had a cup of coffee with the Pirates in September and went 2-for-4. He's a capable defender with good size (6-foot-3, 235 pounds). With injuries to catchers Ryan Doumit and Humberto Cota -- a very possible scenario -- Paulino could see time with Pittsburgh in 2006. His offensive potential at a weak-hitting position makes him worth keeping an eye on.
Paulino, who batted .285 with 15 homers and 60 RBI in 99 games for Double-A Altoona in 2004 and was added to the Pirates 40-man roster in October, has thrown out 40 percent of those trying to steal against him since the 1999 season. It's not likely that Paulino will make any sort of fantasy impact in 2005, but the Pirates don't want to lose the catcher in the Rule 5 draft like they did following the 2002 season.