Robinson Chirinos, C
First, let’s take a look at a guy who’s been around the block a couple of times and is a veteran but is new to the Houston Astros. The Astros went out and signed Robinson Chirinos to fill the void behind the plate that was left by the departures of Brian McCann and Martin Maldonado.
Maldonado was a defensive stalwart who the team and fans both soured on as the season progressed especially in the playoffs. McCann was a very solid veteran presence but injuries and inconsistencies drove his time as an Astro to a grinding halt in 2018 after he played an integral role to the World Series victory in 2017.
Chirinos was brought in to help replace those guys in tandem with Max Stassi. I honestly didn’t really know what to expect from Chirinos. He was a pretty average hitter during his time with the Rangers though, he showed some promise in the power department.
Chirinos got off to a very good start to Spring Training, even hitting for a high average. His average has remained high at .417 through seven games and he has still been impressive in other ways. He’s already launched a homer and driven in three runs. The average isn’t sustainable at all but if he can stay north of .250 in the season it’ll be a plus for the team.
However, the biggest reason Chirinos has impressed is the rapport he’s already been able to develop with some of the pitchers, including Justin Verlander. Chirinos isn’t known for his defensive chops but if he is able to earn the trust from his pitchers and call good games, the Houston Astros may be better off behind the plate than originally thought.