The Rockies acquired backup catcher Jose Morales from the Twins on Thursday for Minor League left-handed pitcher Paul Bargas. Morales will be the primary backup to Chris Iannetta.
Morales, who turns 28 on Feb. 20, has hit .297 in 74 Major League games over three seasons for the Twins, who have star Joe Mauer as their regular catcher and Drew Butera as his primary backup.
By acquiring Morales, the Rockies also bought time for a deep group of catching prospects.
Before Morales arrived, Michael McKenry, who hit .265 in 99 games at Triple-A Colorado Springs and had eight at-bats in six Major League games, was in line for backup duty.
Wilin Rosario, who turns 22 on Feb. 23, was playing well at Double-A Tulsa — .285 with 19 homers and 52 RBIs — and had appeared in the Futures Game during All-Star Weekend before suffering a season-ending knee injury. After reconstructive surgery, Rosario is expected to be ready to play early in Spring Training, but the Rockies don’t want to pressure him to move quickly.
The Rockies also have Jordan Pacheco, who turns 25 on Jan. 30, is coming off a head-turning offensive season in which he hit a combined .323 at Class-A Modesto and Tulsa, and followed that up with a .317 season in the Arizona Fall League.
The Rockies have also signed former Cardinal Matt Pagnozzi for depth.
Bargas, 22, a 13th-rpound pick out of Cal-Riverside in 2009, went 5-4 with a 3.59 ERA in 58 relief appearances at Class A Asheville last season.