Steve Gilbert is reporting the following:
Hearing Wil Nieves is joining— Steve Gilbert (@SteveGilbertMLB) August 6, 2012
#Dbacks as backup catcher. Henry Blanco headed back to Phoenix.
Blanco was hurt while trying to tag a runner at home-plate during the unfortunate eighth inning in last night's game. X-rays were negative, but there was concern about ligament damage with an MRI scheduled for today. If that proves to be the case, Nick Piecoro reckons that could be it for Blanco's season. It does appear there was enough to merit a move, but rather than promoting Konrad Schmidt from the Triple-A Reno Aces, the team has picked up Wil Nieves, It's probably a result of the poor offensive season Schmidt has had, even with the Reno boost.
Nieves went through waivers last week, but much like Scott Podsednik, then refused his minor-league assignment and became a free agent. The Rockies' loss is our... Er, something. :)
Nieves will need to be added to the 40-man roster, but that shouldn't be an issue - the current list seems to have only 37 names on it, and also has Daniel Hudson on the 15-day DL, which is likely a tad optimistic. Schmidt has hit .250/.318/.369, and if we apply the Reno adjustment, that would translate to .170/.218/.229 in the majors, which seems to have been deemed unacceptable, even for the role of a back-up catcher, and would be appreciably below Nieves' career stats. In Schmidt's offensive defense, Piecoro speculated that a leg injury might have been having an impact, and noted a recent improvement, but it seems not to have impressed the team sufficiently.
In terms of impact on Arizona, it's probably not that great, considering Blanco had been getting about one start per week, having been penciled in by Kirk Gibson 18 times this season. Definitely would have been much worse if it had been Miguel Montero getting spiked at home yesterday. Still, one suspect the words "everyday catcher" are now even more the case for Montero than they were over the first two-thirds of the season, and his stamina will likely be tested down the stretch.