Brewers get Bandy, deal Maldonado to Angels in catcher swap
MILWAUKEE (AP) The Milwaukee Brewers acquired Jett Bandy from the Angels on Tuesday and Martin Maldonado is headed back to Los Angeles in an exchange of defensive-minded catchers.
The Brewers also sent minor league pitcher Drew Gagnon to Los Angeles in the deal.
Bandy hit .234 with eight homers and 25 RBIs in 70 games for Los Angeles after being called up from Triple-A Salt Lake on May 20. The 26-year-old Bandy threw out 17 base runners trying to steal, which ranked fourth in the American League and first among major league rookies (37 percent).
The catcher said he made the biggest strides last season with his experience in handling a major league pitching staff.
Bandy could compete for playing time on the rebuilding Brewers with Manny Pina and Andrew Susac, the latter of whom was acquired last summer in a deal that sent reliever Will Smith to San Francisco.
General manager David Stearns liked the 6-foot-4 Bandy's potential with the bat, citing the catcher's ''solid defensive acumen along with above average power.'' Another promising sign for Bandy is that he struck out 38 times in 209 at-bats in his first year in the big leagues.
''I was told when I was younger that I've got a better chance when you put the ball in play,'' Bandy said Tuesday.
Maldonado returns to the organization that drafted him in the 27th round in 2004. He hit .202 last season with eight homers and 21 RBIs.
In 69 games behind the plate, Maldonado threw out about 35 percent of base-stealers, which was sixth in the majors.
The 30-year-old Maldonado made his debut with the Brewers in 2011, serving most of that time as the backup to Jonathan Lucroy until Lucroy was dealt to Texas over the summer.
Maldonado was eligible for arbitration this offseason.