The Colorado Rockies and Jordan Pacheco have reached an impasse. The question of what position Pacheco should play has always lingered, but after a 2013 season in which he struggled mightily, the now-back-up catcher has to prove he can hit enough to stick as well as prove he actually has a position now.
Pacheco knows that the improvements in his game must be significant and immediate, something he discussed this week (quotes from MLB.com):
I didn’t do a good job last year to help the team in the role I was in. When you know you can do something and you don’t do it, it hacks you off.”
As for his comfort level as a catcher, Pacheco insists that he is ready to go:
I do feel confident in the pitcher-catcher relationship…A lot of guys like to throw certain pitches when they’re not feeling good and certain pitches when they’re feeling good. If you can figure that out before they step on the mound, it makes it a lot easier.”
His defense will be an important part of the equation, especially given the general struggles behind the plate for this team with Wilin Rosario as the starter. The offense will be another, and Pacheco better hit for a high average and get on base a bunch because we know his power is limited.
Manager Walt Weiss cites a lack of consistent at-bats for Pacheco’s offensive struggles last year (.239/.276/.312 in 95 games), but there isn’t exactly a ton of at-bats to go around for back-up catchers, so that excuse won’t hold water this season. Pacheco will have to show he can be productive in those limited at-bats, with that lack of rhythm, etc. If he can, he could be a quality option off the bench for this team, but time is short for him to prove himself.