Martin was ranked 3rd with 67 runs prevented behind defensive wizards Jose Molina (103) and A.J. Pierzynski(83). Those numbers don’t include fielding of groundballs, stopping baserunners, and bloking pitchs. Martin was among the best in stopping baserunners according to FanGraphs and he’s pretty good at blocking groundballs.
That’s pretty impressive especially when you consider that Martin’s .325 wOBA was ranked 11th among catchers with at least 300 plate appearances. He’s not an elite hitter, but he’s above average and one of the best defensively.
That’s why the Yankees have considered extending him before he is a free agent. The two sides broke off talks though after the Yankees reportedly made a three-year $20 million offer. However, he is currently playing on a one-year $7.5 million deal so that offer would actually have been a smaller average annual value.
Next year’s free agent class for catchers will be decent though with Martin joining Yadier Molina, Miguel Montero, and Mike Napoli on the market. So by not extending Martin now the Yankees are leaving themselves with options.