Pacheco stands out among backup catchers

Pacheco stands out among backup catchers

Pacheco stands out among backup catchers
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Rockies have a crowded catching corps in camp this spring, and beyond Chris Iannetta in the starter's role, the competition for the backup slot remains up for grabs among six contenders.

Based on Cactus League stats, 25-year-old Jordan Pacheco has been making a strong case for himself. The Albuquerque, N.M., native is hitting .455 (5-for-11) with two doubles and an RBI in seven spring games. He was a Double-A All-Star for the Tulsa Drillers last year, but the jump to the Majors might be a steep step.

"We want to create an opportunity for Pacheco," manager Jim Tracy said. "Is it a stretch on Opening Day? Maybe. But as we go along during the season, to get a player like this exposed as much as you possible can to this environment -- it behooves us to do some of those type of things."

Among the other contenders are: Michael McKenry, the Rockies' Triple-A starter last season; Wilin Rosario, also from Tulsa and fighting off spring injuries; Matt Pagnozi, who has had a couple of cups of coffee with the Cards; and big league veterans Chad Moeller and Jose Morales.

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"Pacheco's a young guy, but he has a presence about him that's very, very interesting," Tracy said. "It's very, very safe to say that he's a legitimate offensive player, and he's going to continue to get better. This guy is eventually going to be a big leaguer, in my opinion. No doubt about it."