According to a report, the San Diego Padres signed 29-year-old catcher Pedro Severino to a minor league contract. The deal is for one year and includes bonuses if he makes the major league team.
Free-agent catcher Pedro Severino and the San Diego Padres are in agreement on a contract, according to a source familiar with the deal. The 29-year-old is on a split deal that will pay $1.95 million if he’s in the majors and includes $550K in performance bonuses.
— Robert Murray (@ByRobertMurray) December 20, 2022
Severino most recently played for the Milwaukee Brewers but saw limited action after testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug. The bulk of his playing time came in Baltimore with the Orioles, where he spent three seasons and earned 938 plate appearances. In that time, Severino slashed .249/.315/.397 with 29 home runs and 111 RBIs.
Most of Severino’s damage throughout his career has been done against left-handed pitching. He owns a .260/.325/.436 slash against lefties with 18 home runs in 449 plate appearances. His platoon splits were even more extreme in 2021, the biggest sample size of his career, posting a .818 OPS with seven home runs in 161 PAs.
Severino is not the greatest defensive catcher.
According to MLB’s statcast, he was in the fifth percentile for framing in 2021. For perspective, Austin Nola was in the 30th percentile, and Jorge Alfaro was in the 32nd percentile for framing in 2022. Pop time numbers were also in the middle of the pack for Severino. FanGraphs also graded Severino as a “net-negative” behind the plate in all three of his seasons in Baltimore.
The signing of Severino gives the organization depth at the catcher position.
After the Padres non-tendered Alfaro and Webster Rivas opted for free agency, there were only three catchers on the 40-man roster. Severino makes it four.
Walk-Off home run de Pedro Severino!!! 🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/TtTlVOt4sW
— Héctor Gómez (@hgomez27) December 10, 2022
Surely, San Diego is hoping to get Severino regular playing time to improve his catching and help him find his groove after practically missing all of 2022, so Severino can help if needed, whether it’s behind the plate or with the bat against left-handers.