Iannetta earns starting nod behind plate

Iannetta earns starting nod behind plate

DENVER -- Weeks back, Rockies manager Jim Tracy was looking for ways to further incorporate Chris Iannetta into the regular lineup.

With Iannetta's increased success behind and at the plate and the recent slump of fellow catcher Miguel Olivo, Tracy has found a way.

"I don't give out handouts," Tracy said. "You earn it. And he's earned it."

Iannetta, behind the dish for Wednesday's finale against Atlanta, will have started 11 games since Aug. 4.

"Every time I see more, I get more and more excited as to the steps he's taken defensively in upgrading his game," Tracy said. "And I mean that both on the physical and mental side. An incredible amount of improvement." Entering Wednesday, Ianetta had a .343 on-base percentage and .411 slugging percentage since returning from Triple-A Colorado Springs on May 27. Meanwhile, Olivo -- an All-Star Game candidate earlier in the year -- has hit .146 since the break.

"In no way am I taking from one to give to another," Tracy said. "I have the opportunity to utilize both because of the circumstances in front of me. If that is, in fact, the case, I'm going to jump all over that."