The Rockies announced that utilityman Chris Owings has been placed on the 10-day injured list due to a left thumb sprain. Infielder Alan Trejo has had his contract selected and will replace Owings on the active roster. In a corresponding move to create 40-man roster space, southpaw Phillip Diehl has been designated for assignment.
After a respectable .268/.318/.439 slash line over only 44 plate appearances with Colorado in 2020, Owings re-signed another minor league deal to return for another season in the Mile High City. In the small sample size of 17 PA this season, Owings was off to a roaring start, with a 1.722 OPS and three triples. The thumb sprain is a new injury, as Owings had been battling a hamstring problem in recent days and the Rockies were hopeful that he was going to avoid the IL for that particular issue.
Owings has already bounced around the diamond, making starts as a second baseman, center fielder, and right fielder over his seven games played. Trejo can replace at least some of that versatility, as the 24-year-old has gotten a lot of time at second base, third base, and shortstop over his brief pro career. A 16th-round pick out of San Diego State in the 2017 draft, Trejo hit .275/.323/.434 over 1163 PA in Colorado’s farm system, reaching the Double-A level in 2019 before the minor league season was canceled in 2020. After working out and playing at the Rockies’ alternate training site last season, Trejo is now set to make his Major League debut.
Diehl may be best known as the player acquired by the Rockies in the Mike Tauchman trade of March 2019, a swap that looked like a steal for the Yankees in the wake of Tauchman’s 2019 numbers. Diehl has recorded a lot of strikeouts (30.51% strikeout rate) and posted a 3.34 ERA over 253 career minor league innings, though he ran into home run trouble pitching with the Rockies’ affiliate in Albuquerque during the homer-happy 2019 minor league season. Diehl has also been hurt by the long ball during his brief MLB career, as his three homers allowed during his 13 1/3 innings with the Rockies in 2019-20 was a big reason behind his 8.78 ERA.