Rockies Could Still Make a Deal in August, but Pickings Are Slim

The July 31 trading deadline passed, the Rockies not getting involved in the last-minute rush to shop. They acquired right-handed reliever Seunghwan Oh from the Blue Jays earlier in the week, adding a veteran to a bullpen that has not lived up to expectations.

But then where else would they have looked for help?

Catcher? They recently called up Tom Murphy, to share time with Chris Iannetta and Tony Wolters, and there really wasn't an impact catcher available on the market.

Rotation? The Rockies have five quality young pitchers. Unless they were in the running for the likes of a Justin Verlander, who would be a proven and dominate No. 1 starter, there's no real value in adding a back-of-the-rotation arm.

Lineup? The catcher's spot has been a black hole, but the rest of the lineup has been solid, particularly with the emergence of Carlos Gonzalez and Ian Desmond from early-season struggles.

In other words, Oh was a step toward filling the one critical need, and he came at a reasonable price, two minor-league players, and has a club-friendly contract. The Rockies pick up less than $600,000 for the remainder of this year, and hold a $2.5 million option on 2019 with a buyout of $250,000.

The names that have been bantered around as prime candidates to be dealt after the trading deadline don't really fit a Rockies need. Outfielder Andrew McMutchen? Third baseman Josh Donaldson (on the disabled list and limited to 36 games this year? Daniel Murphy, a veteran first baseman/second baseman battling injuries? Right-hander Mike Fiers?

All potential free agents, none an upgrade to the Rockies roster.

August trades, which require a player to either be claimed on waivers or clear waivers in order to change teams are minimal and rarely have a major impact. The Rockies have dabbled without any overhwelming impact.

Five Most Notable Rockies August Deals

Date Trade Partner Acquired Dealt
Aug. 19, 1997 Los Angeles Dodgers RHP Pedro Astacio Eric Young

Astacio was 53-48 with a 5.43 ERA in three full seasons and parts of two others with the Rockies. In the pre-humidor days of Coors Field he had arguably the best three-year stretch for a Rockies starter, going 42-34, winning double figures all three seasons, with a 5.48 ERA. He remains with the organization, working with young players in the Dominican, and spending time with the Rockies in spring training.

Date Trade Partner Acquired Dealt
Aug. 6, 2004 St. Louis Cardinals RHP Jason Burch OF Larry Walker
RHP Luis Martinez
LHP Chris Naverson

Comment: None of the three appeared in the big leagues with the Rockies. Key to deal is the Rockies saved $2 million in salary, and alloted $1 million of that to sign draft choice Dexter Fowler.

Date Trade Partner Acquired Dealt
Aug. 23, 2001 New York Mets C Gary Bennett OF Ender Chavez

Comment: Bennett not only finished out the season with the Rockies, but was on the roster in 2002, appearing in 93 games. Chavez never played about the Double-A level in the minor leagues.

Date Trade Partner Acquired Dealt
Aug. 8, 2011 Baltimore Orioles RHP Kevin Millwood Waiver Claim

Millwood gave the Rockies a veteran starter for the remainder of the season. He went 4-3 with a 3.98 ERA. Offered a contract for 2012 he opted to sign with Seattle and was 6-12 with a 4.23 ERA for the Mariners in 2012 before retiring.

Date Trade Partner Acquired Dealt
Aug. 19, 2007 Toronto Blue Jays LHP Mark Redmond Waiver claim

Redman was 2-0 in five games, three starts, and a 3.20 ERA to finish out the 2007 season, helping the Rockies claim the NL wild-card spot en route to the only World Series appearance in franchise history. Re-signed for 2008, he bounced between the Rockies and Triple-A Colorado Springs. He was 2-5 with a 7.54 ERA in 10 games, nine starts, at the big-league level.



Tracy RingolsbyComment