Barnhart hit .200 in the first seven games in May after hitting .308 in April, but his value goes beyond his hitting numbers. He has had to handle a young pitching rotation and struggling bullpen.
“You just have to learn each other’s mentalities and learn the differences,” he said. “Situationally, how do they like to pitch? Do they come right after guys when guys are on base? You’ve got to find out what pitch for a guy is his go-to pitch if he needs an out, if he need a groundball. Is it a slider, a change?”
Manager Bryan Price called Barnhart a defense-first catcher. He has thrown out eight runners stealing, which ranks third in baseball. He has one passed ball and one error.
“He goes back there and we don’t miss a beat,” Price said. “We pick up where Devin left off. They’re both so good in their preparation. He takes the field extremely prepared. He’s very invested in the defensive side of the game. He’s as good of a catcher in blocking as anybody I’ve seen. And the offense just ends up being kind of a nice little bit of a cherry on the top of the dessert right there.”