Willson Contreras Happy To Share Some DH Duties

Backup Victor Caratini will catch ace Yu Darvish again in 2020.

Bruce Levine
July 14, 2020 - 12:40 pm

(670 The Score) Make no mistake about it: Willson Contreras will be the Cubs' starting catcher in this truncated season.

But with MLB teams set to play 60 games in 66 days, Cubs manager David Ross can also utilize Contreras as the designated hitter to give him a breather while also keeping his bat in the lineup.

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"Having the DH is an advantage because it gives us more people to have at-bats," Contreras said. "I am always looking forward to playing every day. And yes, the DH would save my legs a little bit. I think I will be playing most of the games. If they want me to DH, I will be ready to do that.

"I have been the DH a few times in my career. It can be harder for a player like me who likes to be in the action all of the time. But right now, if that is an adjustment I have to make, I will do it. I know it can be hard. I have to make my mental adjustment to that."

The Cubs have a strong backup catcher in Victor Caratini, who could easily start for some other teams across the league. Josh Phegley is also in the mix to make the active roster, which will be comprised of 30 players to open the season. 

The Cubs do plan to pair right-hander Yu Darvish with Caratini, the team has said. On those days, Contreras could be the DH. And that possibility could be seen as early as Opening Day, as Darvish is the favorite to get the ball when the Cubs host the Brewers on July 24.

Contreras is ready to fill whatever role is needed.

"Victor is a great player," Contreras said. "I know he is catching behind me, but he is a real hard-working catcher. He has done a great job catching in spring training. He always has good at-bats. Hopefully, we will stay together going forward. Darvish has done really well with Victor catching him, and I don't mind that. I always catch Jon Lester, so that works the same way. We are teammates, and both want the other to do really well. We are here to win, so that is the most important thing."

Bruce Levine covers the Cubs and White Sox for 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter @MLBBruceLevine​.