The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Catcher Lucroy emerging as leader on Brewers, part of solid trio up middle with Segura, Gomez

  • Print

PHOENIX - The Milwaukee Brewers love the players they have up the middle. Carlos Gomez is a Gold Glove centre fielder, and speedy shortstop Jean Segura is one of the majors' best young players.

Then there's catcher Jonathan Lucroy, who has quietly developed into an important cornerstone behind the plate.

Good bat, especially for a catcher. Solid receiver. Emerging leader.

Lucroy is "a different type of guy. He cares about what goes on with this team as much as anybody does," manager Ron Roenicke said. "I'm not saying the other guys don't care, but (Lucroy) is to the point where he tries to help other players, he works with them."

Lucroy was one of the majors' top offensive catchers last season, batting .280 with 18 homers and 82 RBIs. He also had six triples and nine steals, very respectable speed numbers for a catcher.

Speed isn't something that Lucroy specifically worked on last year, though the 27-year-old catcher said he's always worked out with "running guys" and has trained in the past with NFL players.

"Also, too, it comes with running the bases the right way. You don't have to be the fastest guy to be a good base runner," Lucroy said Tuesday.

Behind the plate, the 6-foot, 195-pound Lucroy makes the most of a frame that's relatively small for a catcher.

"With that low target he sets up, it's kind of unique with big league catchers. He gets down there low," said 6-foot-5 closer Jim Henderson.

"But it's strange. You would think if you miss your spot as a pitcher with that small target you might not get the call," Henderson said. "But somehow he makes it work within the parameters of the plate there, so it's actually amazing how well he does if we screw up."

What Lucroy would like to improve on is throwing out runners. He threw out 21 of 101 potential base stealers for a 20.8 per cent success rate, ranking 18th among regular catchers in the majors. Lucroy said he was more successful in the past, but had fallen into "some bad habits" the last few years that he hoped to fix.

The Brewers are confident in Lucroy's abilities. General manager Doug Melvin often singles him out as one of the top catchers in the game.

No added pressure, Lucroy said.

"You know honestly, I take a lot of pride and a lot of responsibility in being a leader on and off the field, and within the clubhouse," he said. "Hopefully I can do that this year and really contribute."

Lucroy emerged as more of a public presence during last season's turmoil surrounding the suspension of star slugger Ryan Braun for violating Major League Baseball's anti-drug agreement. He's inquisitive with Roenicke. He's an easygoing presence in the clubhouse.

The best catchers must be unselfish, Roenicke said.

"They've got a whole pitching staff to be worried about and (Lucroy) worries about the pitching staff," Roenicke said. "He worries about the whole team."

NOTES: Roenicke said he felt good about the new rules on instant replay and collisions at home plate. "Really, it's not a whole lot different from what we've been doing," he said. Lucroy hoped to get the rules clarified before games began. "We can practice it, I just want to make sure what we can and can't do," he said. ... Gomez and non-roster invitee Mitch Haniger homered during a three-inning intra-squad game Tuesday. ... LH reliever Wei-Chung Wang, a Rule 5 selection, pitched a scoreless inning. He walked Rickie Weeks and Lyle Overbay, and struck out Braun and Martin Maldonado. ... RH starters Marco Estrada and Wily Peralta are among the pitchers the Brewers plan to use for their spring training opener Thursday against the Athletics.


Follow Genaro Armas at

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes


  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.


Make text: Larger | Smaller


In the Key of Bart: Peladeau-Re-Mi

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A young gosling flaps his wings after taking a bath in the duck pond at St Vital Park Tuesday morning- - Day 21– June 12, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • JJOE.BRYKSA@FREEPRESS.MB.CA Local-Postcard  Day-Horror frost and fog created a most beautiful setting at Assiniboine Park Thursday morning in WInnipeg- Enviroent Canada says the fog will lifet this morning and will see a high of -7C-  JOE BRYKSA/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS- Feb 18, 2010

View More Gallery Photos


What Western Conference teams will emerge from the first round of the NHL playoffs?

View Results

Ads by Google