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By Chad Carlson
Photo Credit: Chris Schneider/AP
The Pittsburgh Pirates claimed catcher Matt Pagnozzi off waivers yesterday, after he had been designated for assignment by the Colorado Rockies on Sunday.
Pagnozzi was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 8th round of the 2003 June amateur draft, and made his professional debut with the New Jersey Cardinals of the New York-Penn League.  After advancing to AAA Memphis in 2008 and into 2009, the Cardinals called up him in September, making his Major League Baseball debut on September 29.  Pagnozzi hit his first MLB homerun on September 28, 2010, against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
On November 29, 2011, Pagnozzi signed a minor league contract with the Colorado Rockies.  He appeared in just seven games with the Rockies this year, with six hits in only 21 plate appearances.  He played in 54 games at the Triple-A level this season, hitting .275 with three homeruns, 13 doubles, and 29 RBI’s.
The Bucs made room for Pagnozzi on the 40-man roster by transferring Steve Pearce to the 60-day DL. 
This move was obviously made for next season, and not the remaining two weeks of 2011.  While the Pirates hold club options on both Chris Snyder and Ryan Doumit, a move like claiming a 28-year old catcher from another club implies they’re not looking to exercise either of those options.  If that’s the case, the three catchers vying for the starting catching job in 2012 will be Pagnozzi, Michael McKenry, and Jason Jaramillo.
And…
As Always…
Let’s Go Bucs!