WASHINGTON D.C. - The San Diego Padres today announced they have selected catcher Rene Rivera from Triple-A Tucson and that catcher Yasmani Grandal has been placed on the 60-day disabled list with a right knee sprain. Rivera will be active for the club's 1:35 p.m. ET game today against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park and will wear uniform number 44. Executive Vice President/General Manager Josh Byrnes made the announcements.
Rivera, 29, is making his first career stint with the Padres and will get his first Major League experience since appearing in 45 games for the Minnesota Twins in 2011. In 74 games for Tucson this season he has hit.343 (86-for-251), with a .382 on-base percentage and .474 slugging percentage with 18 doubles, five home runs and 38 RBI. His batting average this season is currently tops in the Padres minor league system, second among all qualifying minor league catchers and fourth overall in the Pacific Coast League, earning him a starting spot for the Pacific Coast League squad in the 2013 Triple-A All-Star Game. Signed by the Padres last offseason as a minor league free agent, the Bayamon, Puerto Rico native owns a career .257 batting average with 188 doubles, 81 home runs and 419 RBI in 13 minor league seasons. The right-handed hitting backstop owns a lifetime .193 batting average (49-for-254) with 10 doubles, four home runs and 15 RBI in 98 career Major League games spanning parts of four seasons with Seattle (2004-06) and Minnesota (2011).
Grandal, 24, was hitting .216 (19-for-88) with a .352 on-base percentage and .341 slugging percentage with eight doubles, one home run and nine RBI in 28 games since being reinstated from the restricted list on May 28. He appeared in 60 games during his rookie season in 2012, posting a .297 batting average (57-for-192), .394 on-base percentage and .469 slugging percentage with seven doubles, one triple, eight home runs and 36 RBI. The switch-hitting catcher was acquired by the Padres in a trade with the Cincinnati Reds on December 11, 2011.