Ronny Paulino was acquired from Pittsburgh today for Jason Jaramillo.
From a Phillies news release: Paulino, 27, split last season between Pittsburgh, Triple-A Indianapolis and the Gulf Coast League Pirates. In 40 games (27 starts) for Pittsburgh last season, he hit .212/.277/.305 (57 OPS+) with two home runs and 18 RBIs. He threw out 26 percent (8 of 31) of potential basestealers and for his career has caught 24 percent (51 of 216). With Indianapolis, Paulino hit .306 with four home runs and 18 RBI in 30 games. He spent time on the disabled list with a right ankle sprain, which included a rehabilitation assignment in the Gulf Coast League.
Originally signed by Pittsburgh as a non-drafted free agent, Paulino, who is arbitration eligible this off-season, is a .278/.331/.382 hitter with 19 home runs and 128 RBI in 304 games. Paulino developed in the Eastern League the same time as Carlos Ruiz.
Jaramillo, 26, hit .266 with eight home runs and 39 RBI in 115 games for triple-A Lehigh Valley this season, his second full season at Triple-A. He was a second round-selection by the Phils in the 2004 draft and has never played in the Majors.
Beerleaguer: There were strong hints late in ’08 that Chris Coste was falling out of favor in one form or another; his offensive production petered out dramatically and there were grumblings that he was losing the trust of the pitching staff. On top of it, there were rumors he was playing hurt as a result of a nasty collision at home. He started only once in the postseason, and it was as a DH.
I viewed the Phils as locks to upgrade the backup catcher position with a little more depth this winter, and Paulino was the type of receiver I thought they'd get. Paulino’s injury-shortened 2008 was preceded by a disappointing 2007, which included some questions about his work ethic, according to Baseball Prospectus, and I have some vague recollection of Chris Wheeler saying the same thing. Philadelphia is a better situation for him than Pittsburgh, to maybe tap into that power potential alongside some of the best in the game. Nevertheless, Philadelphia has definitely become a place where defense is king when it comes to the catchers. Charlie Manuel stuck with Ruiz for as long as any manager could. A small sampling of sites seem to grade Paulino’s defense a solid "B."
Readers in the last thread speculated that he could be flipped, but I just don’t see it considering how Coste finished, and the fact that they traded Jaramillo, who saves the Pirates a couple bucks if nothing more. Good trade for the Phils, who supply Chooch with an experienced backup who's over two years younger.