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1/16/2014 3:36 P.M. ET

Rockies sign McKenry to Minor League deal

Catcher, who was originally drafted by Colorado, gives club depth behind plate

DENVER -- The Rockies have signed catcher Michael McKenry to a Minor League contract with an invitation to Major League Spring Training.

McKenry, who turns 29 on March 4, was drafted by the Rockies in the seventh round in 2006 out of Middle Tennessee State and debuted with six appearances in 2010. Since then, he has played 187 games over three seasons with the Pirates. He has a career .223 batting average with 17 home runs and 64 RBIs in 193 games.

Last season, he hit .217 before sustaining a season-ending left knee injury. On the day he was hurt, he stayed on the field because Pirates starting catcher Russell Martin was dealing with his own knee injury. Realizing the sacrifice McKenry made, Pirates fans at PNC Park gave him a rousing ovation before the National League Wild Card Game and before Game 3 of the NL Division Series when he hobbled to the third-base line during player introductions.

McKenry adds experience and depth to the Rockies' catching. The plan is for offense-oriented Wilin Rosario to be the main catcher and Jordan Pacheco to be the backup. There are no other catchers on the Rockies' 40-man Major League roster.

Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.