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Two Top Boricua Catchers now with The Houston Astros who welcome Christian Vázquez traded from Boston

Vázquez was traded to Houston who now has 2 top catchers, both from Puerto Rico (Photo Bill Menzel/Latino Sports)

(The following article was translated & edited from elnuevodia.com written by Rubén A. Rodríguez)

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The newly acquired Puerto Rican catcher will share duties behind the plate with his compatriot Martín ‘Machete’ Maldonado, which will represent one of the best combinations in baseball

Two of the best defensive catchers in baseball will share the tools for the remainder of the season with the Astros.

So from now on Houston will just have a sweet little problem of making time to play for these two outstanding Puerto Rican catchers.

The change that brought Puerto Rican Christian Vázquez from the Boston Red Sox to the Astros will give the team the opportunity to combine two talented receivers of proven quality with presence in addition to Martín ‘Machete’ Maldonado in these last three months of competition when miles tend to count more.

Having these two figures behind the plate night after night adds to Houston’s experience, defense and in the case of Vázquez much more offense.

In addition, rest will be provided at this vital stage in the season.

“It’s a sweet problem. I think everyone would like that problem on their computers. We are well covered in that position, which is very demanding. Having two catchers like that is great. May God give them both health so they can make that combination,” Astros hitting instructor Alex Cintrón said.

Vázquez, who was traded to the Astros just hours before Monday’s game between the two teams (Minute Maid), is one of the biggest offensive receivers this season.

At the time of being traded to the Astros, Vázquez, the longest-tenured player in the organization (since 2008), was hitting .282 with eight home runs and 42 RBIs.

The Bayamon native has the second best offensive average among catchers in the American League and the third in the Major Leagues.

“Any of the two that is in the lineup will always be better for us. That experience of theirs is important for this last stage of the season.”

“I hope that they both work together and that they can fit into our system that should not be too far from what he was doing in Boston. Very similar”.

In Vázquez, the Astros also acquired an excellent defensive catcher, one of the most productive hitters with baserunners.

Maldonado, a Gold Glove winner, is just hitting .175 but has 10 home runs and 30 RBIs.

On defense, he has just one error (.999) and 25% of runners put out on steal attempts.

“First I was surprised that the Boston team made the decision to trade Christian after so many years with that team and being only three games away from the wild card,” the former major league infielder admitted.

“But at the same time super happy. Christian adds a lot of value to us at catcher. He is having a great season. Together with Martín Maldonado they will make a great combination of catchers. Both with experiences in World Series and playoffs. Besides being Puerto Ricans, there we are seeing two of the catchers who should be in the World Classic.”

Finally, Cintrón thinks that Vázquez will be in the lineup tonight against his old team.

“Remember he has to adapt and accommodate. The analytics folks will meet with him. I think tomorrow (today) is the day he’s in the lineup.

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