Veteran catcher Kevin Plawecki triggered an opt-out clause in his minor league contract with the Nationals, reports Andrew Golden of the Washington Post (Twitter link). Unless Washington selects him onto the big league roster, he’ll return to the open market.
Plawecki signed with the Nats on April 1. It was his second non-roster pact of the year, as he’d previously opted out of a deal with the Pirates after being informed he wouldn’t make the Pittsburgh roster in Spring Training. Plawecki has appeared in 24 games with the Nats’ top affiliate in Rochester. He hit .256/.354/.341 through 94 trips to the plate. The right-handed hitter homered just once but walked at a strong 11.7% clip against a manageable 16% strikeout rate.
Now 32, Plawecki is looking to reach the majors for a ninth straight year. He’s a career .235/.313/.341 hitter in 447 MLB games between the Mets, Indians, Red Sox and Rangers. He split last year between Boston and Texas, combining for a .220/.286/.286 mark over 186 trips to the plate. He had a very tough time controlling the running game last season, catching just five of 51 attempted basestealers. He’d been off to a better start in Rochester, cutting down 10 of 42 runners (a slightly below-average 23.8% rate) through 201 1/3 innings.
The Nationals have relied on a catching tandem of Keibert Ruiz and Riley Adams. The former has gotten the bulk of the playing time and is off to a .242/.308/.356 start through 146 plate appearances. Adams has struggled in seven games scattered over the season’s first six weeks.