Murphy went 3-for-19 with three home runs during Grapefruit League action. Along with Luke Maile and Andrew Susac, Murphy is vying for the backup role to starting catcher Jacob Stallings. While the non-roster invitee could provide some pop if he wins the job, he's posted a career 39:193 BB:K while slashing .219/.265/.357 in parts of seven major-league seasons. Maile may hold the inside track for the job, as he has a history with new GM Ben Cherington from their time in Toronto. Maile is also already on the 40-man roster. In any case, Murphy could start the 2020 campaign at Triple-A, with a real shot of seeing action in Pittsburgh sometime during the summer.
Murphy signed with the Pirates as a non-roster invitee Friday, Adam Berry of MLB.com reports. Murphy fits best as a third catcher who only makes the roster in the event of an injury, as he owns a .219/.265/.357 slash line across parts of seven seasons, averaging less than 100 plate appearances per year. In 70 trips to the plate for the Diamondbacks and Braves last season, he hit a lopsided .175/.246/.413.
Murphy was non-tendered by the Braves on Monday. Murphy appeared in 26 games during the 2019 season across stops with Arizona and Atlanta. He struggled to a .175 average to go with four home runs and seven RBI.
Murphy had his contract selected by the Braves on Tuesday. Murphy was traded to Atlanta from the Diamondbacks at the end of July, and despite hitting just .170 with three RBI over 14 games at Triple-A Gwinnett, he'll have a chance to end the regular season in the majors. He'll take the place of Charlie Culberson, who was placed on the 60-day injured list Tuesday.
Murphy was sent from Arizona to Atlanta in exchange for cash considerations Wednesday, Robert Murray of The Athletic reports. Murphy is currently at the Triple-A level with the Diamondbacks and will presumably remain there following the trade. The move is a classic August trade that now gets made on July 31 with the removal of the separate waiver trade deadline. Murphy has hit .177/.250/.419 this season and .219/.265/.357 over parts of seven major-league seasons. He'll be little more than injury insurance for the Braves.