Good bat for a second baseman, bad glove. Gotay was a 31st-round pick of the Royals in 2000. He pretty much demolished rookie ball at 18 and A-ball at 19, hit a bit of a speed bump at High-A at 20. At 21, in 2004, he hit .289/.368/.440 in AA and earned a promotion to the majors — well, Kansas City — and didn’t play too badly, .270/.315/.375. However, he didn’t hit well at all in 2005 for the Royals — .227/.288/.344 — playing about half the time and on the major league roster most of it. He was puttering along in AAA in 2006 when the Royals and Mets made a “What the Hell?” trade, Gotay for Jeff Keppinger.
Gotay puttered along in Norfolk for the rest of 2006. Last year, he spent some more time in the glamorous Tidewater region but mostly was on the Mets’ bench, where he hit well, .295/.351/.421, and hit .288 as a pinch-hitter. He played five games (two starts) at shortstop last year, as the Mets neglected to have a backup shortstop, which is one of the reasons why Jose Reyes nearly died in September. (Remember this if Escobar falls apart down the stretch.) Gotay had only played five games at shortstop in his minor league career entering last year. I don’t know what Gotay’s defensive reputation is, but his stats don’t look good to me.
In case anyone on the Braves was thinking he could platoon with KJ, they weren’t thinking. Gotay was just horrible from the right side in 2007, .194/.286/.222, and struck out 13 times in just 42 PA. In his career, he’s hit .219/.315/.266 righthanded. His minor league splits are mostly similar, and he probably shouldn’t be switch-hitting. He’s a poor basestealer, caught six times and successful five in his major league career, and a 57% base thief in the minors. Slow, but doesn’t make many mistakes running the bases, and has only been thrown out trying to take an extra one once in his career.