Sandy Leon

Red Sox sign Kevin Plawecki as backup catcher, DFA Sam Travis

Red Sox sign Kevin Plawecki as backup catcher, DFA Sam Travis

The Boston Red Sox have found their replacement for Sandy Leon, and it's not necessarily an upgrade.

The Red Sox have signed free-agent catcher Kevin Plawecki to a one-year contract worth $900,000, USA TODAY's Bob Nightengale reported Thursday. 

The Athletic's Robert Murray was the first to report Plawecki's agreement with Boston. It's unclear which player the team is releasing to make room for Plawecki on the roster.

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The move comes one month after the Red Sox traded Leon to the Cleveland Indians, leaving Christian Vazquez as the only catcher on the 40-man roster.

Coincidentally, Plawecki last played for the Indians, batting .222 with three home runs and 17 RBIs in 59 games last season. The 28-year-old spent his previous four seasons with the New York Mets, posting a .218 batting average over 237 games after making his MLB debut in 2015.

If the Red Sox want to think outside the box, they may consider Plawecki as an emergency pitcher; the right-handed thrower pitched two scoreless innings of relief for Cleveland last season and made two pitching appearances for the Mets in 2017.

UPDATE (3:45 p.m. ET): The Red Sox officially signed Plawecki to a one-year contract Thursday.

The team designated first baseman Sam Travis for assignment in a corresponding move.

Ex-Red Sox catcher Sandy Leon thanks fans, organization in heartfelt post

Ex-Red Sox catcher Sandy Leon thanks fans, organization in heartfelt post

The Sandy Leon era in Boston is over, but the catcher clearly is thankful for the five years he spent with the Red Sox.

Leon, who was traded to the Cleveland Indians on Monday for a minor league pitcher, posted a message on Instagram thanking Red Sox fans and the organization.

Here's what he wrote:

Today, I thank God for everything he allowed me to live these past five years. They were filled with unimaginable joy for me and my family. I want to thank the @redsox for giving me the opportunity to be a part of their organization. You were an extended family during that time. Thank you for being a part of my career. I will live in appreciation of the team. I also want to thank the Boston fans. You guys are the best! Thank you for every encouraging word during each game. Thank you for showing what true passion for a club is. Today, I am convinced that everything I learned and lived during my time with the @redsox will be fundamental for whatever God has in store for me with the @indians Thank you Red Sox and Red Sox fans. Eternally grateful. 🙌🏻

Check out the post below:

View this post on Instagram

Hoy quiero darle gracias a Dios por todo lo que me ha permitido vivir en estos últimos 5 años, los cuales han sido llenos de cosas inimaginables para mi familia y para mi. Quiero darle gracias a los @redsox por haberme dado la oportunidad de ser parte de su organización. Fueron como una familia extendida. Les agradezco haber sido parte de mi carrera. Viviré agradecido de ustedes. También quiero dar gracias muy especiales a los fanáticos de Boston ¡SON LOS MEJORES! Gracias por cada palabra de aliento en cada partido. Gracias por mostrarme cómo se puede amar a un equipo. Hoy estoy convencido que todo lo aprendido y vivido en los @redsox será fundamental para lo que Dios me permita vivir en los próximos años con los @indians GRACIAS POR TODO @redsox GRACIAS REDSOX FANS. Eternamente agradecido. 🙌🏻🙌🏻 • • • Today, I thank God for everything he allowed me to live these past five years. They were filled with unimaginable joy for me and my family. I want to thank the @redsox for giving me the opportunity to be a part of their organization. You were an extended family during that time. Thank you for being a part of my career. I will live in appreciation of the team. I also want to thank the Boston fans. You guys are the best! Thank you for every encouraging word during each game. Thank you for showing what true passion for a club is. Today, I am convinced that everything I learned and lived during my time with the @redsox will be fundamental for whatever God has in store for me with the @indians Thank you Red Sox and Red Sox fans. Eternally grateful. 🙌🏻

A post shared by Sandy Leon (@sandyleon41) on

Leon didn't exactly strike fear in opposing pitchers during his time in Boston, but he did serve as a trusted battery mate for several Red Sox pitchers. Chris Sale and Rick Porcello, in particular, preferred the Venezuela native as their go-to backstop.

With Leon off the roster, that leaves Christian Vazquez as the lone catcher currently on the Red Sox depth chart.

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Red Sox trade catcher Sandy Leon to Indians for minor league pitcher

Red Sox trade catcher Sandy Leon to Indians for minor league pitcher

Sandy Leon's unexpected run with the Boston Red Sox finally is over.

The Red Sox traded the veteran catcher to the Cleveland Indians on Monday for minor league right-hander Adenys Bautista, the team announced.

The trade is Chaim Bloom's second move since taking over as Boston's chief baseball officer in October and ends Leon's five-year tenure with the Sox.

The Red Sox weren't expecting much from Leon when they acquired him from the Washington Nationals for cash considerations in 2015.

The Venezuela native had a stellar 2016 campaign, though, batting .310 with an .845 OPS in 78 games while splitting time with Christian Vazquez behind the dish.

Leon became a trusted battery mate for Chris Sale, Rick Porcello and other Red Sox starters and played a key role in Boston's 2018 run to the World Series.

The 30-year-old played a total of 358 games for the Red Sox, batting .223 with 24 home runs and 118 RBIs over 1,074 plate appearances.

Leon's departure leaves Vazquez as the only returning catcher on the Red Sox' depth chart, as the team traded Blake Swihart midway through the 2019 season.

The 21-year-old Bautista joined the Indians in 2018 out of the Dominican Republic and joined Cleveland's Arizona League club last July after starting out on the organization's Dominican Summer League team.

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