Before Tuesday’s game, the Colorado Rockies recalled utility man Pat Valaika from Triple-A Albuquerque and designated left-handed reliever Mike Dunn for assignment .
With a roster down to a three-man bench, the Colorado Rockies were expected to make a roster move after they added an arm to the overworked bullpen to get through the historical run-scoring series (92 runs in four games) against the San Diego Padres.
Our Kevin Henry predicted a move … but it comes as a surprise that Pat Valaika was one who got the nod. After not making the club out of Spring Training, Valaika has been called up and sent down from the minors on two other occasions and the results have not been kind. In 18 Major League games this season, he is 2-for-30 (.067) with one extra-base hit, three runs scored and 15 strikeouts. Those stats are a far cry from where he was in 2017 when he was a top bat off the bench for Bud Black and garnered the nickname “Patty Barrels.”
However, Valaika has given the Rockies no other choice with his play in the minors. In 44 games down in Albuquerque, he is 63-for-186 (.339) with 16 home runs, 39 RBI, and 33 runs scored with a 1.033 OPS.
More from Colorado Rockies News
- A Colorado Rockies Thanksgiving
- Colorado Rockies: Charlie Blackmon out for the season
- Colorado Rockies: Injuries shift look of roster ahead of Dodgers series
- Colorado Rockies: 3 things we appreciated from Tuesday in San Francisco
- What Bill Schmidt’s comments mean for the Colorado Rockies in 2023
This very well could end up being Valaika’s final chance at staying in the Majors in a Rockies uniform. He has proven all that he can in the minors and if it doesn’t translate over to the big leagues this time around, it might be time to finally move on.
For the Rockies, there is still some trade value in Valaika as he is only 26 years old, can play multiple positions, and has some past Major League success. For Valaika, if he is moved, he could thrive under different tutelage as he has been in the Rockies’ organization since being drafted in the ninth round in 2013.
Pat Valaika has to prove that he belongs with Rockies. Otherwise, it is time for a change of scenery. Whether or not this is it still is to be determined but one thing is for sure … Valaika is running out of chances.