Betancourt Option Declined
The Rockies want to retain.
They, however, want to pay him less than the $5.4 million called for in his option for 2010.
As a result, the Rockies announced on Friday they declined the option. They, however, also announced they will continue to talk with Betancourt in an effort to bring him back in 2010.
Betancourt and right-hander Juan Rincon both filed for free agency on Friday. Others who filed Friday were right-handed pitchers Brett Tomko of Oakland,and Braden Looper of Milwaukee, Chad Fox of the Cubs and Paul Byrd of Boston, and third baseman Chris Woodward of Boston.
The Rockies are talking to Betancourt about a two-year deal.
They, however, could wind up getting him back for one year. They are expected to offer Betancourt arbitration. The result of that would be the Rockies either keep Betancourt and have to pay him a salary determined by an arbitrator, or if another team signs Betancourt, who is a Type A free agent, the Rockies would get two top draft choices as compensation.
Betancourt, 34, went 4-3 with a 2.73 ERA (56.0 ip, 17 er) in 61 games while splitting his time with Colorado and Cleveland in 2009. He had 61 strikeouts and 20 walks while allowing a .209 (42-for-201) batting average.
The Rockies acquired Betancourt from the Cleveland Indians in exchange for Minor League right-handed pitcher Connor Graham on July 23, 2009. Betancourt made 32 appearances in a Rockies uniform, going 3-1 with a 1.78 ER. He pitched in Games Two, Three and Four of the National League Division Series vs. the Philadelphia Phillies and allowed one run in 2.1 innings.
INTERESTING TO read that Yorvit Torrealba rejected a two-year offer from the Rockies because the team had not yet declined his 2010 option, which the Rockies eventually did. If Torrealba and his agent did not know that the Rockies were going to decline the option they had not done a very good job of keeping up with his situation. There was never the slightest doubt that the Rockies would decline Torrealba’s option at $4 million for 2010.