|The Indians learned on Jan. 19 that their projected No. 2 starter had been misrepresenting his identity throughout the course of his 11-year professional career. Fausto Carmona really is Roberto Heredia, and really he’s 31 and not 28, as previously believed. Just as significantly for Cleveland as they prepare to begin spring-training camp in a few weeks, Carmona/Heredia could have a difficult time obtaining a work visa to pitch in the U.S. this spring.
Against this backdrop, the Indians dealt 24-year-old righty reliever Zach Putnam to the Rockies for veteran starter Kevin Slowey and cash considerations. Slowey joins an import-heavy rotation in Cleveland that also features Ubaldo Jimenez, Justin Masterson and Derek Lowe. Colorado, meanwhile, has hoarded starters all offseason, acquiring Slowey from the Twins as well as Tyler Chatwood, Guillermo Moscoso, Josh Outman and minor league lefty Nick Schmidt.
Slowey’s flyball tendencies ought to fit better in Cleveland than they would have in Denver. For more on his travails in 2011, check out his previous Trade Central review.
|Zach Putnam, rhp
Born: July 3, 1987 in Rochester, Mich.
Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 225. Bats: R. Throws: R.
Career Transactions: Selected by Indians in fifth round of 2008 draft; signed Aug. 14, 2008.
Putnam pulled down a tidy $600,000 as a fifth-round selection in 2008, but with no reliable second pitch aside from an above-average splitter, he quickly made his way to the bullpen. He relies on a 90-93 mph fastball that touches 95, while mixing in the splitter to generate groundballs and upset the timing of lefties. Putnam could fill a middle relief role with the Rockies right away.
|Kevin Slowey, rhp
Age: 27. Remaining Commitment: Arbitration-eligible for 2012-13 seasons ($2.7 million salary in 2011).
Contract details courtesy of Cot’s Baseball Contracts.