Originally posted on Fox Sports Wisconsin  |  Last updated 2/27/12
Barring injury or an unlikely meltdown, Jonathan Lucroy will be the starting catcher when the Milwaukee Brewers open the 2012 season on April 6. But by all accounts, George Kottaras will be on the roster once again as the team's No. 2 catcher. The 28-year-old returns for a third season with the Brewers. Last year, he hit .252 in 49 games with five home runs and 17 RBI. Kottaras provides some pop off the bench and that has, at times, tempted manager Ron Roenicke to use him in late-game pinch-hitting situations. "He was a pretty good offensive player he's got power but what I liked about him is he took a walk, he gave the tough at-bat. And, when you look at stats for guys that get few at-bats the less amount of at-bats a guy has (the) numbers always go down." Defensively, Kottaras is still working on his game. He threw out just three of 14 runners last year and allowed two passed balls, but has been putting in some extra time this spring with bench coach Jerry Narron. "He's working on his throwing, he's working on his footwork, he's working to do things with Jerry to get better defensively," Roenicke said. "But he blocks really well, we didn't have any problem with that. And, trying to improve his game to be that backup catcher." Kottaras saw most of his action last year as left-hander Randy Wolf's de facto personal catcher. Roenicke would like to see Lucroy spend more time working with the veteran pitcher but it stands to reason that Kottaras will catch most of Wolf's starts. "He's been all over me about stuff," Kottaras joked. Interviews provided by the Milwaukee Brewers Follow Andrew Wagner on Twitter.
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