January 4, 2011
The Wichita Wingnuts signed former Major League catcher Edwin Bellorin on Monday.
Bellorin enters his 13th season of professional baseball, all of which have been spent in the affiliated ranks. A native of Edo Bolivar, Venezuela, Bellorin appeared in eight games with the Colorado Rockies over three seasons from 2007-2009. The right-handed hitting Bellorin collected his first Major League hit on September 24th, 2008 against San Francisco Giants' righty Billy Sadler at AT&T Park.
"Obviously the catching position is very important", said Wingnuts' manager Kevin Hooper. "Edwin gives us over 10 years of experience in affiliated ball which is something you can't teach. To bring in a Major Leaguer at any position is a huge plus, so it's a great find for the organization to sign a catcher of Edwin's stature."
Bellorin, who will be 29 on opening night, split last season with the Texas Rangers' and Kansas City Royals' organizations, playing in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League for Round Rock and Omaha respectively. Bellorin totaled 74 games played in 2010, throwing out 29% of the opposition's stolen base attempts.
Originally signed by the Los Angeles Dodgers as an international free agent in 1998, Bellorin started his career the following summer with the Dodgers' Dominican Summer League affiliate. Bellorin reached Double-A Jacksonville at just 21 years old in 2003, and has spent the last five seasons in either Triple-A or the Major Leagues.
Bellorin is a lifetime .263 hitter in 829 minor league games with 35 home runs and 381 RBI. Defensively, Bellorin has a 32% career caught stealing percentage, including a 38% mark in 2008 with Triple-A Colorado Springs. Over the 2007 and 2008 seasons, Bellorin combined to hit .306 with 14 home runs and 110 RBIs in 146 games for the Sky Sox.
Bellorin joins second baseman Jason Diaz and relievers Eric Gilliland and David Miller to give the Wingnuts four players under contract for the 2011 season.
The Wingnuts open the 2011 season on May 12th at Amarillo. Wichita's 2011 home opener is Friday, May 20th versus the El Paso Diablos.