With the signing of Paul Bako, the Phillies have an overabundance of experienced catching inventory. It's enough to make you wonder.
Maybe it's just a minor move for catching depth. Or maybe it's more. Frankly, the Bako signing is so odd, it's hard to ignore. Consider this "what if?" What if they're planning on making Chris Coste strictly a right-handed bench bat? The Phillies need a right-handed hitter, and solving the problem internally by freeing up Coste isn't just an economic solution in the tradition of Phillies' quick fixes, it's likely the best they can do considering that sellers don't exist six weeks into the season.
As nomadic as his career has been, it's a little surprising that Bako hasn't caught on somewhere when experienced catching is at a premium. He's an atrocious hitter, but he's a bonafide backup, good enough to earn 338 plate appearances last season in Cincinnati. That's 33 more than Coste got in '08.
So when you consider where he might fit into the catching mix, it's hard to see an assignment to Double-A, or even Triple-A, considering he hasn't had a regular stay in the minors since 1999.
Notes: J.C. Romero surrendered a run on two hits in an inning of work in his first appearance with Lehigh Valley. He also struck out two. For those keeping tabs on Gary Majewski, he also pitched in the game, giving up a pair of runs over two innings. His ERA has ballooned to 4.22. Infielder Miguel Cairo has accepted a minor league assignment, according to a report on the Phillies' Web site. It is not yet reported which Phillies affiliate he will report to, but Lehigh Valley, which featured a Pablo Ozuna occupying the No 3 hole tonight, is a good bet.