Lucroy getting his shot behind the plate
MILWAUKEE — He hasn’t been named the No. 1 catcher for the Brewers’ just yet, but rookie Jonathan Lucroy is certainly going to get a chance to earn the spot.
Lucroy, who was called up on May 21 in place of injured starter Gregg Zaun, started his third straight game behind the plate for the Brewers on Saturday. With three starts on the homestand, Lucroy has doubled his career total.
One thing that Lucroy brings to the table is something the Brewers haven’t had all season, a catcher who can consistently throw runners out. In seven games — one of which he entered late as a pinch hitter — Lucroy has thrown out two of five runners attempting to steal.
“We’re trying to address the stolen bases,” manager Ken Macha said, referring to his decision to start Lucroy. “He’s certainly done a nice job so far with that.”
While throwing out base runners is just one of many parts of his job as a catcher, Lucroy admits it’s one aspect in which he really strives for success.
“I take a lot of pride in doing that; I fully enjoy throwing people out,” Lucroy said. “I do my best every day to be perfect in that regard because that’s one part of the game I feel like I can control.
“You really can’t control a lot of parts of the game, so I feel like I can really contribute a lot by throwing runners out and keeping guys off base the best I can.”
With Kottaras 0-for-7 on the current homestand and 3-for-25 with just three walks this month, Lucroy is getting his chance to show what he can bring to the table.
According to Macha, since he’s joined the big league club, Lucroy has been the hardest worker in the clubhouse, routinely arriving at the ballpark six or seven hours before the first pitch.
But as with every other position, it all boils down to results for Macha.
“Everybody gets an opportunity,” Macha said. “It’s up to production. So, get some hits, throw out some runners, catch a winner, that’s all part of the formula.”
Jordan Schelling is an associate reporter for MLB.com