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McKenry will compete with Pacheco for backup job

McKenry will compete with Pacheco for backup job

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Catcher Michael McKenry's comeback from a left knee injury has gone well enough to persuade the Rockies to add him to their 40-man Major League roster. The club made the move Thursday, after allowing outfielder Kent Matthes to be claimed off waivers by the Athletics.

McKenry, 29, was with the Pirates last season, but suffered a tear in the lateral meniscus in his left knee on July 27 and underwent surgery three days later. After being non-tendered by the Pirates, McKenry signed a Minor League deal with the Rockies on Jan. 16. McKenry has demonstrated an increase in his mobility that has come with the breaking of scar tissue in the knee.

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"With Mac, we considered him a guy that has been a Major League player," said Bill Geivett, the Rockies' senior vice president of Major League operations. "It was a little bit more his injury than anything else that he wasn't on the roster."

Being on the 40-man roster means McKenry can be put on the 25-man Major League roster, but it doesn't guarantee that it will happen on Opening Day. McKenry has a Minor League option, meaning he can be sent down to Triple-A Colorado Springs without being exposed to waivers.

However, Jordan Pacheco, who is competing with McKenry to back up regular catcher Wilin Rosario, does not have an option, meaning the only way he can be sent down is if he clears waivers.

Matthes, 27, a fourth-round pick in 2009, split last season between Double-A Tulsa and Triple-A Colorado Springs, and hit .281 with 20 home runs and 63 RBIs.

Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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