Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Phillies looking to trade Paulino, Coste will be backup catcher

Despite struggling through Spring Training as he dealt with injuries, Chris Coste will once again be the backup catcher for the Phillies. Coste appears to have won the spot behind Carlos Ruiz now that the Phillies have begun shopping the other contender for the spot, Ronny Paulino. According to Todd Zolecki of, the Phillies have let other teams know that Paulino can be had in a trade.

Paulino was acquired by the Phillies this offseason from the Pirates for catcher Jason Jaramillo. He hit a mere .185 in Spring Training and the Phils feel he doesn't bring enough to the table to keep over Coste. If the Phillies can't find a taker for Paulino, they could send him down to Lehigh, although he would serve as a backup there to Lou Marson.

Making a catcher available opens up the possibility of the Phillies getting a second lefty for the bullpen in return, although I am not sure many teams would be interested in Paulino. After all, how much demand could there be for a light-hitting backup catcher?

The bigger story here is the fact that Chris Coste will continue to have a job with the Phillies. While the Phils could get more for him in a trade, they realize that Coste brings a lot to the team with both his bat and his leadership. Of course, it's really only a matter of time before Lou Marson is ready and Coste will find himself out of a job.

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