Rockies Add Arms In Series Of Deals
DENVER—Beginning with the trade of righthander Ubaldo Jimenez to the Indians in late July, the Rockies have been stockpiling young pitching in a succession of deals.
The process began when 23-year-old lefthander Drew Pomeranz, who may have the highest ceiling of the lot, and 23-year-old righthanders Alex White and Joe Gardner, arrived from Cleveland in the Jimenez deal. During the offseason, general manager Dan O'Dowd also acquired righthander Tyler Chatwood, 22, from the Angels for catcher Chris Iannetta; righthander Guillermo Moscoso, 28, and lefthander Josh Outman, 27, from the A's for outfielder Seth Smith; and righthander Kevin Slowey from the Twins for minor league reliever Daniel Turpin. Six weeks after Slowey was acquired, the Rockies traded him to the Indians for 24-year-old righthanded reliever Zach Putnam.
Amid all this search for youth, the Rockies did sign lefthander Jamie Moyer, 49, to a minor league contract. The Rockies had a void of pitching prospects in part because of unproductive drafts from 2006-2008. So O'Dowd has been bent on adding young pitchers with power arms, minor league options and who can be controlled for a number of years.
"The depth certainly looks good on paper," farm director Jeff Bridich said. "It should give us a lot of flexibility potentially. What it really does is it covers us in the case of further injury and gives us some young pitchers with upside ready to compete at the Triple-A, major league level."
• Catchers Will Swanner (left thumb), who hit .264/.357/.550 at Rookie-level Casper last year, and Bryce Massanari (left wrist), who hit .328/.419/.564 at low Class A Asheville, have recovered from surgery and should be ready when minor league camp opens on March 2.
• Lefthanded reliever Tyler Johnson, 31, who appeared in 116 games for the Cardinals in 2005-2007 but last pitched in 2009, will try to revive his career in the Rockies organization and will report to minor league camp.