The Red Sox sent lefthander Franklin Morales and minor league righty Chris Martin to Colorado for infielder Jonthan Herrera. The deal breaks down to this: Morales is out of options, but Herrera is not, giving the Red Sox some roster flexibility and infield options. The Rockies can pair Morales with newly signed Boone Logan to replace Josh Outman, who they traded for outfielder Drew Stubbs. Martin is a tall, hard-throwing righty who was pitching in an independent league until Boston signed him after a tryout in 2011.
Chris Martin, rhp
Transactions: Selected by the Tigers in the 18th round of the 2004 draft; did not sign. Selected by the Rockies in the 21st round in the 2005 draft; did not sign. Signed as a free agent by the Red Sox, 2011.
Martin has a fascinating back story. He was drafted twice but did not sign before his career derailed by injuries. He didn’t pitch for five years, then discovered he regained arm strength noodling around in a rec league. He signed with Grand Prairie of the independent American Association and got noticed by Boston. He throws strikes with a fastball that tops out around 95 mph, and has developed a tight slider/cutter. He works down in the strike zone and yielded just three home runs in 72 innings between Triple-A and Double-A—a trait that could serve him well in Colorado. He has the upside of a seventh- or eighth-inning reliever and might be major league ready now, but doesn’t have to be added to 40-man until after this year.
Franklin Morales, lhp
Service time: 5.007. Remaining commitment: Third-time arbitration eligible. (Earned $1.487 million in 2013). Eligible for free agency in 2015.
Morales has held lefthanded hitters to a .194/.286/.301 batting line in his career and gives the Rockies a second lefthanded option to go with Logan. He’s seen a slight degrade in the past year in fastball velocity to 92.6 mph. A narrowly flyball pitcher, Morales struggled with keeping them in the park, especially in 2012.
|RED SOX ACQUIRE|
Jonathan Herrera, inf
Age: 29. Bats: B.
Remaining commitment: Second-time arbitration eligible in 2014, earned $900,000 in 2013. Eligible for free agency in 2016.
Herrera, 29, hasn’t shown much with the bat (.276/.326/.357), but he makes good contact with his small-ball approach. An energy player, he gives the Red Sox a capable backup at shortstop and second. He’s been much better at second with a 5.2 UZR, according to FanGraphs, versus -1 at short.