Courtesy of PNC

Stats ‘N’ At: Are Cervelli, Diaz best catching duo?

Francisco Cervelli and Elias Diaz talk between innings. - MATT SUNDAY / DKPS

Welcome to the third edition of Stats ‘N’ At, a weekly feature that takes a deep dive into the numbers that define the Pittsburgh sports scene.

Over the years, some top-notch catchers have crouched behind home plate for the Pirates. There was Manny Sanguillen, a three-time All-Star and down-ballot MVP candidate for the 1970s Bucs. Perennial Gold Glove winner Tony Pena in the ‘80s. On-base machine Jason Kendall in the ‘90s. And, more recently, Russell Martin, who earned a special place in Pirates fans’ hearts — and stole a piece of Johnny Cueto’s soul — during the 2013 Wild Card game.

Add to that list the 2018 tandem of Francisco Cervelli and Elias Diaz. They have arguably been the best catching combo in the major leagues, and one of the best in franchise history.

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