The Rays traded C Robinson Chirinos to the Rangers on Monday for a player to be named or cash. Add that trade to the one Friday that sent C/OF Stephen Vogt to the A’s for the same exchange and the Rays moved two catchers with major-league experience within four days.

That leaves the organization thin with catching in the upper levels of the minor-league system. Chris Gimenez is the everyday catcher at Triple-A Durham and would be the first called up should the need arise with the Rays. Mark Thomas is the everyday catcher at Double-A Montgomery. Though the Rays like Thomas, he’s more than a year away from playing in Tampa Bay.

“All I would say is that I don’t think any team really has beyond three (major-league ready catchers in the organization),” GM Andrew Friedman said. “It’s one of those things that you would like to have four or five sure, and we did have that, but in going through and assessing where we were and what might transpire over the course of the season, something has to give. And in this case it was our very deep depth on the catching front.”

Both Chirinos and Vogt were designated for assignment March 31 when the Rays added DH Shelley Duncan and RHP Jamey Wright to the 40-man roster. Sensing both would be claimed off waivers, the Rays decided to trade them. Also, with Gimenez and Thomas set in their full-time roles, there wouldn’t be much playing time for Chirinos and Vogt.

Jamie Nelson, the Rays’ assistant hitting coach/catching coach and the former roving catching instructor in the organization, said Thomas is a player to watch.

“He can throw as well as anybody. He’s learning how to call a better game. He’s improving in that category. He’s blocking the ball pretty well. His receiving’s improved,” Nelson said. “As far as the defensive part, his last three years have been unbelievable and the stats back it. We’re hoping that he starts getting the offense going, be more consistent and then you’re going to see a pretty good ballplayer.”