On Saturday, the Colorado Rockies continued to make roster adjustments in light of player injuries.
INF Alan Trejo has been selected to the Major League roster. Trejo will wear No. 13.— Colorado Rockies (@Rockies) April 10, 2021
INF/OF Chris Owings has been placed on the 10-day IL (left thumb sprain) and LHP Phillip Diehl has been designated for assignment. pic.twitter.com/zi8RcHkMOy
Chris Owings had been recovering from a “tight hamstring,” and Bud Black had hoped the injury would not require Owings to spend time on the injured list. He pinch hit for the Rockies in Friday’s game, hitting a triple. The sprained thumb on Owings’ left hand is in addition to the hamstring.
So far, Owings has had a successful season for the Rockies, slashing .533/.588/1.133. However, his 2020 season with the Rockies ended due to injury after he played in 17 games. There are concerns that 2021 may take the same track.
The Rockies’ decision to bring up 24-year-old Alan Trejo is unsurprising as Daren Gonzalez predicted in late March. Trejo was a non-roster invitee to spring training who saw 48 plate appearances and slashed .313/.478/.791 in the Cactus League. If the Rockies do move Trevor Story, Trejo would see additional MLB playing time, so this addition could be in preparation for future changes.
Trejo tied for 40th in the Purple Row PuRP rankings. As Jeff Aberle wrote earlier this year:
[Trejo] has provided about average offense at each level, combined with strong defensive utility. In 2019 he hit .243/.290/.391 with 15 homers in 476 PAs (100 wRC+) for Double-A Hartford against pitchers who were on average a year older. That’s not an exciting profile per se, but it’s an important one to fill well, as there is usually a roster spot for a flexible up the middle defender who can hit a little (especially with a 26-man roster). Trejo was the “personal cheeseball” of the system for Baseball Prospectus in late 2019.
Here’s Trejo at spring training.
To make space for Trejo on the 40-man roster, Phillip Diehl was designated for assignment. Since coming to the Rockies in the Mike Tauchman trade with the Yankees, Diehl has struggled. In spring training, he appeared in seven games, earning an ERA of 10.80 in 6.2 innings. In 2020, he earned an rWAR of -0.2.
Given the Rockies’ lack of a lefty reliever, the decision to DFA Diehl makes their options even fewer.