The Milwaukee Brewers will almost certainly have a different catching battery in 2023. Omar Narvaez is going to be a free agent and the catcher everyone believed would spend the season as his backup, Pedro Severino, has decided to test the free agency waters again.
#Brewers C Pedro Severino has elected free agency.
— MiLB-Transactions (@tombaseball29) October 7, 2022
Severino was originally signed by the Brewers in November of 2021 to backup 2021 All-Star Omar Narvaez. He got off to a torrid start in spring training, hitting well over .300 and displaying so power at the plate. Unfortunately, he tested positive for a banned substance and was suspended for 80 games.
As a result of Severino’s suspension, the Brewers went out and traded for Victor Caratini, who spent the year as the Brewers’ backup catcher. Severino did spend some time with the Brewers when his suspension was over. However, he spent most of the season (when he was eligible) with the Nashville Sounds.
Who Will Play Catcher for the Brewers in 2023?
As mentioned previously, Omar Narvaez will also be a free agent this upcoming winter. In 2022, Narvaez hit .206/.292/.305 with four home runs and 23 RBI. This was a far drop-off from his All-Star season in 2021 in which he hit .266/.342/.402 with 11 home runs and 49 RBI.
Victor Caratini will almost certainly be back with the Brewers in 2023 as next year is his last season of club control. He made $2 million last season and likely will not cost too much more than that in 2023. While he did provide some fun home run moments (he tied the team record for most consecutive games with a home run by a catcher), Caratini did struggle at the plate. Caratini hit .199/.300/.342 with nine home runs and 34 RBI. That being said, it is possible that he is the team’s starting catcher in 2023.
If Caratini is the starting catcher, that means the Brewers will need a new backup. It is possible they elect to give that role to prospect Mario Feliciano, who got his first big league hit this season in a brief call-up with the Brewers. While playing with Nashville, Feliciano hit .274/.326/.386 with six home runs and 38 RBI. He is still a bit of an unknown, however, as he only has six Major League plate appearances under his belt. In addition, Feliciano has had a bit of an injury history over the last two seasons. It is possible that the Brewers find a new catcher on the free agent market.