The Rockies have reached agreement on a minor league contract with southpaw Ty Blach, reports Thomas Harding of MLB.com (on Twitter). As Harding notes, it marks a homecoming for Blach, a Denver native.
Blach has pitched in parts of four big league seasons, the bulk of which have come with the division-rival Giants. He shouldered a fairly significant workload between 2017-18 in San Francisco, tallying 282 1/3 innings of 4.56 ERA/4.18 FIP ball during that two-year stretch. That’s decent back-of-the-rotation production, as Blach demonstrated solid control and kept the ball on the ground at a strong 49.7% clip.
Even during his best seasons, Blach never missed many bats though. He’s one of the softer throwers around the league, averaging right around 90 MPH with his sinker. Blach only punched out 12.3% of opponents during that stretch (a mark that’s around ten points lower than the league average for starters) and the Giants placed him on waivers in July 2019. The Orioles claimed Blach and gave him five starts, but he posted an 11.32 ERA across 20 2/3 innings in Baltimore before being outrighted off their 40-man roster.
Blach remained in the organization as a non-roster player, but he underwent Tommy John Surgery in July 2020. He missed a bit more than a year recovering from that procedure, then spent the last few months of the 2021 season rehabbing in the low minors. Blach elected minor league free agency after not getting another call to the bigs in Baltimore.
The 31-year-old will now join his hometown organization in hopes of getting back to the majors for the first time in three seasons. He can presumably serve as either rotation or long relief depth for Colorado, which is likely to open the year with a starting staff of Germán Márquez, Kyle Freeland, Antonio Senzatela, Austin Gomber and Peter Lambert after losing Jon Gray in free agency.