|The Rockies are trying to win now, with Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez humming and Jorge de la Rosa brought back to a rotation that already features Ubaldo Jimenez and 22-year-old emerging ace Jhoulys Chacin.
The Astros have entered a complete rebuilding mode, and teams like that don’t necessarily need a closer, not to mention two with Matt Lindstrom and Brandon Lyon. So the Astros traded Lindstrom, one of the game’s harder throwers, to the Rockies for a pair of minor league pitchers in righthander Jonnathan Aristil and lefthander Wes Musick.
It’s hardly an earth-shattering deal, but it makes sense for both clubs. Lindstrom adds a power arm to a Rockies pen that relies on closer Huston Street, who’s more of a command guy than a velocity guy. The Astros get a lefthander with some polish in Musick and an athletic pitcher in Aristil to add to their improving (but still below-par) pitching depth.
|Jonnathan Aristil, rhp
Born: Nov. 30, 1986 in San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic.
Ht.: 6-1. Wt.: 160. Bats: R. Throws: R.
Career Transactions: Signed as nondrafted free agent by Rockies, July 9, 2003 … Granted free agency, Nov. 6, 2010; re-signed by Rockies, Nov. 7, 2010.
Aristill finished his season with two scoreless innings in Triple-A with Colorado Springs, but the converted infielder had an unimpressive season. Our scouting report also isn’t terribly impressive. He’s got an upper-80s fastball that touches the low 90s, an average changeup that he relies on significantly, and a below-average curveball. He’s given up 27 home runs the last two seasons in less than 185 innings, with 26 starts and 37 relief appearances in that span. He’s pitching this winter for Toros del Este in the Dominican League, a roster that also features Astros lefthander Fernando Abad and Rule 5 acquisition Aneury Rodriguez.
|Wes Musick, lhp
Born: Dec. 30, 1986 in Lufkin, Texas.
Ht.: 6-0. Wt.: 190. Bats: L. Throws: L.
Career Transactions: Selected by Rockies in ninth round of 2009 draft; signed June 13, 2009.
Musick has an easy scouting report as a classic lefthander with excellent secondary stuff and a fringy fastball. He has a long medical history, as he had both knee surgery to repair a torn ACL and Tommy John surgery when he was in college at Houston. Musick was drafted three times—out of high school by the Astros in 2005, as well as ’08 and ’09—because of his feel for a curveball and an excellent changeups, which scouts rate as a plus pitch. His fastball has average velocity at 88-91 mph, and he pitched off it more in 2010, which may be why he was hit harder than a 23-year-old in the Sally League should be. The Astros have drafted mostly high school pitchers, and Musick could jump a level up to Double-A in his new organization’s young farm system.
|Matt Lindstrom, rhp
Age: 30. Bats-Throws: R. Remaining Commitment: Arbitration-eligible for 2010-12 seasons ($1.625 million salary in ’10).
Contract details courtesy of Cot’s Baseball Contracts.