DENVER, COLORADO - JUNE 16: Chris Iannetta #22 of the Colorado Rockies rounds third base to score on a fielding error on a hit by Charlie Blackmon in the first inning against the San Diego Padres at Coors Field on June 16, 2019 in Denver, Colorado.
(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

The New York Yankees have added quality depth by signing Chris Iannetta. The catcher has played for four teams in his career.

According to WFAN’s Sweeny Murti, the New York Yankees have signed catcher Chris Ianetta to a minor league deal. Jon Heyman of MLB Network later confirmed the deal.

Iannetta’s entering his age-36 season. He’s spent 14 seasons in the majors with four teams, including the Colorado Rockies, Arizona Diamondbacks, Los Angeles Angels, and the Seattle Mariners.

In his 14-year career, Iannetta has never been an All-Star or won any awards. He’s also only had three seasons with at least one fWAR.

The underwhelming career as a starter aside, Iannetta provides excellent depth. His defense is still average for a catcher, and he still provides power at the plate. He also still has his trademark discipline at the plate. Iannetta’s never had a season with under an 11% walk rate although his strikeout rate has skyrocketed as he’s aged. Last season, Iannetta struck out in 32.9% of his at-bats in 2019.

Having a player who can provide solid defense and on-base ability in the minors is a necessity. The Yankees are relying on Kyle Higashioka to be the primary backup.

The 30-year-old Higashioka has only appeared in 56 games at the major-league level. He lacks experience and tools. It’s very possible that he underperforms as a full-time backup, which means the Yankees need good depth.

Iannetta has a chance to beat out Higashioka in spring training for the backup job. Even if he doesn’t, it’s possible Iannetta will see time at the major-league level. Gary Sanchez has failed to stay healthy for a full season.

Fans better get acquainted with Iannetta because he could play a key role on the 2020 Yankees.

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