Colorado Rockies’ Old Friend: Jordan Pacheco Tries To Break Through


Apr 30, 2014; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Colorado Rockies catcher J. Pacheco against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Jordan _____ had a monster rookie year for the Colorado Rockies, batting .309/.341/.421 in 505 ABs in 2012, and hasn’t found his way in the big leagues since. 

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With our Old Friends category, we’ve typically highlighted former Colorado Rockies who are doing well with their current clubs (like Will Harris, Collin McHugh, or Juan Nicasio), though that is obviously not always the case with former Rox. As with every club, some former guys struggle to find a place on a big league roster, or are simply out of position and buried in a depth chart, leaving a once-promising player in the minor leagues (at least for the time).

That situation may be the one Jordan Pacheco is now finding himself in, stuck at AAA Reno in the Arizona Diamondbacks’ system after being designated for assignment about two weeks ago, before this Rockies-Dbacks series is set to begin in Denver tonight.

Pacheco, who hit just .242/.333/.333 in the big leagues this year with the Diamondbacks before his assignment to Reno, was a man without a position — not good enough to stick at catcher as the Diamondbacks added guys like Jarrod Saltalamacchia, not good enough to stick in the corner infield spots with Jake Lamb on the roster, and with not quite  a strong enough bat to stick on the bench after several years of nothing special at the plate.

Right now, he’s in Reno, so there’s certainly always the possibility of an injury call-up or a move to bring him back for depth, of course.

And, considering his versatility in the field, he can likely eventually get a job — in Arizona or elsewhere — as some type of catcher/utility man on a big league roster.

Don’t forget this is a player who, in his full rookie season in 2012, finished fifth in the National League in hitting, barely qualifying for the minimum 502 at-bats (he had 505!) and batting .309, behind Buster Posey (who won), Andrew McCutchen, Ryan Braun, and Yadier Molina.

That earned him a sixth place finish in the Rookie of the Year voting that season (Bryce Harper won, and Wilin Rosario finished fourth), and the Colorado Rockies all of a sudden had an interesting little prospect on their hands.

But with Rosario behind the plate (well, for as long as that lasted), Nolan Arenado coming quickly at third base, Todd Helton eventually giving way to Justin Morneau at first base, and Corey Dickerson and Carlos Gonzalez in the corner outfield spots, there just wasn’t anywhere to put Pacheco.

And as the consistent at-bats dwindled, so did the effectiveness at the plate, prompting the Rockies to move him along early last season.

Our friends at Venom Strikes discussed Pacheco with us last night, after we asked about his status in Arizona:

It’s tough to break into the big leagues, and even tougher to sustain a job, with literally hundreds of guys behind you pushing for your roster spot. Pacheco is versatile, relatively young, and a good athlete. He’ll have other chances in the big leagues, though it’ll certainly be a challenge for him.

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