According to a report from Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Colorado Rockies have agreed to a two-year deal with catcher Chris Iannetta. The deal is worth a total of $8.5 million over the length of the contract. The move marks a return to Colorado for Iannetta, who spent six major league seasons with the club from 2006 to 2011.
Iannetta, 34, was originally selected in the 4th round of the 2004 MLB Draft out of the University of North Carolina. Ultimately, Iannetta would leave the Rockies organization in 2011 in a deal with the Los Angeles Angels that involved pitcher Tyler Chatwood, who made headlines this week for signing a deal with the Chicago Cubs. Iannetta would spend four seasons in Los Angeles, before spending the past two seasons with the Seattle Mariners and Arizona Diamondbacks.
Iannetta proved to be an important backstop for the young Arizona Diamondbacks. Under new head coach Torey Lovullo the team made a quick turnaround. The veteran was reborn in the desert, hitting .251 in 89 games with the Diamondbacks. He also hit 17 home runs (1 shy of his career high) and totaled 43 RBI’s. All of this was made more impressive by the fact that Iannetta suffered a grizzly injury on May 13th. Among the injuries were a facial fracture and missing teeth at the hands of a fastball from Pittsburgh Pirates reliever Johnny Barbato. The veteran returned and played in two NLDS games against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Rockies had been rumored to be interested in bringing back catcher Jonathan Lucroy. Now, the team appears to be going in a different direction. With Lucroy being one of the most prominent catchers on the market, the Rockies will likely turn their attention to the relief market. One option is to bring back closer Greg Holland. The Rockies have also been interested in reliever Wade Davis as a potential replacement for Holland.