Tony Sanchez prefers to be a realist. The 24-year-old catcher wasn't blind to the fact that the Pirates signed free agent Russell Martin to a two-year contract. He's aware of Michael McKenry's standing on the roster. Rather than delude himself, Sanchez said, he plans to focus on the part of the equation that he can influence. "I'm not naïve," Sanchez said. "I know the chances of breaking camp with the team are slim to none. "With McKenry and Martin, they're one and two. I'm going to have to earn it." Sanchez, the fourth overall pick in the 2009 draft, was added to the 40-man roster this offseason and hopes he can be an opportunist. He knows his playing time in spring training will increase when Martin joins Team Canada for the World Baseball Classic and Ali Solis, a non-roster catcher invited to camp, plays for Mexico. All he can do, he said, is play well enough to impress the coaching staff. "[Clint] Hurdle hasn't seen me play much, but I know Banny [Jeff Banister] has, and some of the other guys," Sanchez said. "I'd also love to start building a relationship with the big league guys. Even when I'm catching bullpens, I'm trying to learn them, learn their strengths and weaknesses and start building on that rapport with those guys like I had in Triple-A."
Catcher Sanchez trying to reach majors with Pirates despite odds against him
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | Feb 17