Colorado Rockies: Why the signing of an MiLB catcher is significant
The Colorado Rockies signed former MLB catcher Carlos Pérez to a minor league deal last week. The Rockies only have two catchers on their 40-man roster in Elias Díaz and Dom Nuñez but Pérez has some MLB experience, which the Rockies could find useful if an injury happens to one of the former two catchers.
Pérez, 31, spent parts of four seasons in the majors as he played with the Angels, Braves, and Rangers between 2015 and 2018. In 2019, he played in the minors with Baltimore, and in 2021, he played in 97 games in Triple-A with Oakland.
The Colorado Rockies signing of Carlos Pérez is a bit more significant than you may initially think
His service time with the Angels is of note, though. He was with them from 2015 through 2017. He was teammates with Rockies first baseman C.J. Cron in all three seasons but even more significantly, in 2016, there was someone of note who was a special assistant with the Angels: Rockies manager Bud Black.
Black was part of the reason why Cron signed with the team before the 2021 season and Black’s personal connection with other players has helped them come to the Rockies. Connor Joe came to the Rockies because of his connection with Black and the San Diego area. Joe went to the University of San Diego and Black to San Diego State but Black lives in San Diego in the offseason.
Last offseason, he saw both Joe and minor league outfielder Wynton Bernard train in San Diego and he liked what he saw so the Rockies signed both of them. Joe ended up becoming a fan favorite and was fifth among position players on the team in rWAR despite only playing in 63 games.
Bernard got off to a hot start in Albuquerque before he significantly cooled off. The 31-year-old has yet to make his MLB debut but he, like Pérez, signed a minor league deal with the Rockies last week.
The Rockies hope that Pérez will become the new Connor Joe but, as of now, it seems unlikely that he will get the playing time but he will be a depth piece in Triple-A and the Rockies need to build up some depth down there before the 2022 season starts.