Braves year in review: Travis d’Arnaud has career year
Travis d’Arnaud’s third year with the Atlanta Braves was his best of his career. However, it was not that long ago that d’Arnaud’s career appeared to be in danger. After, debuting with the Mets in 2013, he would put together two really solid seasons in 2014 & 2015. The Mets believed they had their catcher for the near future, but unfortunately d’Arnaud would deal with injuries over the next three plus seasons. He would not be the same player he was early in his career, leading to the Mets hitting him with the DFA tag in 2019.
d’Arnaud was then picked up and spent a week with the Los Angeles Dodgers before being traded for by the Tampa Bay Rays. The catcher would have a career resurgence over the next 92 games in Tampa, leading to the Braves giving him a shot in free agency before the 2020 season.
d’Arnaud would sign a two year, $16M deal with the Braves and would play extremely well over the covid shortened season. An injury to his left thumb would force d’Arnaud to miss significant time in 2021, but the Braves chose to give him another two year, $16M deal, identical to the first deal he received with the team.
How did the 2022 season go for Travis d’Arnaud?
Travis d’Arnaud rewarded the Braves with the best season of his career, hitting .268/.319/.472 with 18 HR, 61 R, 60 RBI, .343 wOBA, & 120 wRC+. d’Arnaud arguably had his best year defensively as well. He was worth 0.8 dWAR according to Baseball Reference and ranked third in baseball in Catcher Framing Runs (10) according to Baseball Savant. He trailed only Jose Trevino (17) and Jonah Heim (12) in Catcher Framing Runs. Additionally, d’Arnaud’s play earned him his first All-Star honors! Overall, Travis d’Arnaud was worth 3.9 fWAR in 2022.
Travis d’Arnaud has proven himself to be a valuable member of the Atlanta Braves. When healthy, he has shown himself to be one of the better catchers in baseball. He also provides valuable leadership and clubhouse presence, something that cannot be quantified into a statistic. He has shown himself capable of handling the Braves pitching staff and as a mentor to the younger players. Coming off his career best year in 2022, the Braves will look for d’Arnaud to continue to provide quality play in 2023.
Let’s hope d’Arnaud can continue his play and help the Braves get back to the World Series. It is safe to say that he found his game in Tampa Bay in 2019. He has found his home in Atlanta, Georgia.