Seven Rockies players file for free agency

November 8, 2010 | 10:17 am | 29  

The window for major league teams to negotiate exclusively with their free agents passed over the weekend and players are now free to talk to any team. Seven Colorado Rockies players are now on the open market:

The Rockies would be in line for draft-pick compensation if they offer arbitration to two of their free agents — De La Rosa and Dotel — and the players sign elsewhere. De La Rosa, a Type-A free agent, would bring the signing team’s first- or second-round pick and a supplemental first-round pick. Dotel, a Type-B free agent, would bring a supplemental first-rounder. The Rockies have until Nov. 23 to decide whether they will offer arbitration to any of their free agents and players have another week to decide to accept or reject it. If either De La Rosa or Dotel signed elsewhere before the arbitration deadline, the Rockies would receive draft-pick compensation. The team will certainly offer arbitration to De La Rosa, but it’s uncertain whether they would do so with Dotel and risk bringing him back next season at close to $4 million.

With the free agent filings, the Rockies currently have 33 players on their 40-man roster. A number of key prospects will need to be added to the roster this offseason or else be exposed to all other teams in the Rule V draft. Among them: Bruce Billings, Parker Frazier, Jordan Pacheco, Cory Riordan, Wilin Rosario and Casey Weathers.

29 Comments »

  • Mike Raysfan | November 8, 2010 | 11:28 am

    Thanks Steve. You gotta love free agency and the whoopla that comes with it.

    I just finished reading Tim Dierkes article, “2011 Top 50 Free Agents”. He has an interesting take, to say the least. He has Jorge De La Rosa ranked 12th and heading to …. drum roll … Kansas City. He does say both the Nationals and Pirates are potential teams.

    Who does he suggest as a possible replacement for Jorge? At #26 none other than Jon Garland. “He’s best-suited on an NL team looking for bulk innings”

  • Wayne | November 8, 2010 | 12:33 pm

    I would go with Garland, as a replacement for Cook and/or Francis. I’d like to see us look into Troy Glaus as a replacement for Giambi/Mora.
    I don’t see DLR even considering KC as an alternative to the Rox.

  • Cameo | November 8, 2010 | 12:46 pm

    I would be shocked to see DLR go to KC or Pit. Those teams don’t need to be spending their money on DLR. Talk about a high priced bust. I think DLR needs to stay with the Rox where he is comfy or go to a team that has high expectations with a lot of veterans to help him. Going to a crappy team with marginal prospects or a bunch of young-ins isn’t going to cut it for him. I like KC and would love for them to be successful and don’t want DLR to go to KC. DLR can go to Pit and they can extend their losing record streak to 40 for all I care. Pit isn’t going to win anytime soon. Neither is KC for that matter.

  • Jasper | November 8, 2010 | 4:20 pm

    Talk about manufacturing rumors — sport writers with stuff like that are no more informed than the Coors Field janitor. KC or Pit? Hardly. I will say that the Nationals are willing to spend – I read that Lee is OK with interviewing with them to listen to their song, so if there is anything to this story at all it is in the speculation that the Nats might make a play for DLR after Lee heads for his millions elsewhere. If so, the losers in the Lee bidding who might then consider DLR would expand from teams like Yankees/Rangers, Angels, and Dodgers, to include teams like the Nats. Then again, the negatives in DLR’s past might make a lot those teams wary. The free agent period is just underway, but right now I believe that the Rockies chances with DLR are high. As Mike Raysfan notes, Garland is no replacement for DLR, but I agree that he would be useful if added, but I don’t think that he is needed as of now.

  • Eric B. | November 8, 2010 | 4:49 pm

    @ Jasper – Your point is well taken, the more players there are for Lee, the more bidders there will be for DLR.

    Yankees/Rangers/Angels/possibly Nats are all likely bidders, but the Dodgers will not be participating in the DLR sweepstakes. They just signed Lilly (lefty starter comparable to DLR) to a three year deal and are not going to be raising their payroll to the levels that will be necessary to sign JDLR (3-4 yrs, 8-10 mill per yr).

    Garland would be a good lefty innings eater if the Rockies are without DLR and Francis, but certainly not a even replacement for DLR.

  • Rich M | November 8, 2010 | 6:54 pm

    Erik B, just to be accurate Garland is a “righty” innings eater, not a lefty. However I actually think he would be a good fit for the Dodgers as well as the Rockies..

  • steve c | November 8, 2010 | 7:02 pm

    Having to give up a first or second round draft pick AND pay his (presumably a fairly large, fairly long)contract is a steep price for DLR. It has to be a team willing to spend. It has to be a team confident enough in their farm system to give away a high pick, or it has to be a team with a history of silly moves. I see the number of suitors ultimately being smaller than some think. Nats, White Sox, Tigers, Mets, maybe Angels?????? I would have said the D-backs before Kevin Towers…..but not now.

  • steve c | November 8, 2010 | 7:06 pm

    Oh yeah……….I should have added the Texas Rangers to the DLR list if they lose Lee. Also – the Cubs could fall under the “teams that make silly moves” and make a play…..but I’m think they may be over that phase.

  • Steve N | November 8, 2010 | 7:19 pm

    Someone at Sports Illustrated just posted the top ten overrated free agents. DLR was #2. Hope it bodes well for the Rox in signing him!

  • Agbayani | November 8, 2010 | 8:49 pm

    Remember what I told you guys. De La Rosa’s stats say he’s the left-handed Jason Hammel. No better and no worse. If you don’t want to see the club shelling out 10 million bucks a year for Hammel, you shouldn’t want to see them doing it for De La Rosa. If what we’re hearing is correct, De La Rosa’s price has soared way beyond what his performance warrants.

  • ProgMatinee | November 9, 2010 | 6:48 am

    Thats why I think you have to let him go. I know pitchers are overpaid, but there’s no way that DLR is worth 50% of Matt Holliday’s salary or 80% of Dan Uggla, considering he normally tops out at 30 appearances.

  • Anonymous | November 9, 2010 | 8:54 am

    True enough Agbayani. The stats you put up make it seem like there is some comparison to Jason Hammel. And you are right. I personally would not shell out $10M a year for Hammel. The big difference is Jorge did manage to win 16 games. Should have/could have won 20. Can he do it a again or was it just a 1 season performance? That is where I seem to differ from most. I do believe Jorge can win 16 again, if he stays a Rockie. I guess maybe I have some bias and doubt when it comes to Jason Hammel but I just don’t see him ever winning 16 games.

    Strictly from my point of view, the rotation is suspect with liabilty and if the plan is to go with a mediocre starting rotation then I would set my expection to see more of the same as last season when it comes to the BP and utilization. The underachivers darn sure better pick it up and they better make some offensive changes that many fans think need to be made.

    But hey, what do I know. I could be totally wrong about Hammel and even Cook. Maybe Cook will return to 2008 form? Ok maybe that would be expecting a little too much.

  • Mike Raysfan | November 9, 2010 | 8:58 am

    I guess I better clarify. When I say mediocre, I mean the staff as a whole not individuals. Obviously Ubaldo is far from mediocre. Same can be said for Chacin. I think he will be much better than mediocre.

  • C Thistle | November 9, 2010 | 9:52 am

    Apparently almost no one is worth as much as Uggla thinks he is. He reportedly turned down a 4 year $48M offer.

  • Julian | November 9, 2010 | 9:55 am

    Agbayani, if you were O’Dowd, what is the most that you would offer to DLR?

  • Jasper | November 9, 2010 | 11:20 am

    The Sports Illustrated commentator who rated DLR as #2 on the “most overrated free agent list” must have been llistening to people in organizations that 1) are planning to bid on his services and want to keep the price down; or 2) look at his negatives as outweighing his positives. Those teams that will bid for his sevices will consider his positives and conclude that he is a much better pitcher than someone like Hammel and maybe a pitcher who can rival a Cain, Oswalt, C.J. Wilson, etc. In any event, DOD is smiling.

  • Rich M | November 9, 2010 | 12:00 pm

    Alright I am tired of people saying how the Rockies starting pitching is so mediocre/terrible. If healthy (and that is a big IF) then I am fine with Jimenez, Chacin, Cook, Francis and Hammel. We even have some emergency starters in Rogers, G Smith and G Reynolds.

    Great starting rotation for 2011 – no, but it’s a lot better than what the Rocks have had in past years. Guys like Francis and Cook who used to be your #1 or #2 pitchers are now slotted much deeper in the rotation.

    What the Rockies REALLY need now is some serious hitting in the lineup to protect Cargo and Tulo. As it stands today there is no where near enough offense to allow those starting pitchers to be truly successful. And if you didn’t notice, teams began to pitch around Cargo and Tulo to get to the other swing and miss guys in the lineup.

    In short I’ld rather give that $10m per year to a really big bat than give it to DLR! That would be a much safer bet, than gambling on whether or not DLR somehow loses his mental focus and/or inconsistent command.

  • sabrchip | November 9, 2010 | 12:33 pm

    With next year’s draft expected to be one the best in recent years, I’d be happy to offer arbitration to DLR hoping someone else invites him onto their payroll. Those extra picks will be very important and go a long way toward cementing the Rox future.

    Does anyone think that Uggla is lobbying for a trade with his extravagant contract demands? Would you pay $54M for 4 years of his right-handed power given that the Oh Boyz (TulO, UbaldO, CargO) will be ripe for free agency just in the time Uggla’s contract expires?

    I’m thinkin’ Francis comes back for $4M with IP incentives. Judging from the history of TJ surgery, he should be “completely” healty in the spring. Cook, based on his final showing last season, may be a good contributor if he’s the 4 or 5 starter.

    The staff will be okay if they can get the run support they so desperately need and that should be what DOD focuses on. Whether Stewart and Iannetta produce at the plate is a risky gamble but a better gamble with CLans on board. The bench needs to have strength. I’m not convinced Spilly, Smith and Herrera can give enough offense so there’s five players who should be looking over their shoulders in the next 120 days.

    Does anyone get a read on whether Kyle Parker is convinced he has any future as a QB at Clemson? Looking at his team’s record and his stats doesn’t make me think he’s got much of a future with a pig’s bladder. Were his baseball stats a good indication of his promise on the diamond?

  • ProgMatinee | November 9, 2010 | 1:13 pm

    I’d be more willing to give Uggla a 3 year contract, but I would pay him $14 a year considering the window of opportunity for winning. If the Rockies overspend now in attempts to win, IMO it will be forgivable if in 3 years they cut the payroll back. But it will be absolute disaster if in 2013 or 2014 we lose Tulo and Cargo and Todd retires and we are sitting around talking about what could have been if only they bumped payroll a few million. Give us a ride, even if its short.

  • Wayne | November 9, 2010 | 1:24 pm

    sabrchip–Francis did not have TJ surgery, he had shoulder surgery so hard to say what the track record is with that.

    Rich M. I agree with most of what you said, especially about the offense needing help more than starters. However, I do not think that Cook and Francis together will help the rotation be much better than mediocre. I do not think either has anything left (maybe Cook). For Francis to be effective at this point in his career he needs to have the pinpoint control, and the ball movement of a Glavine. He doesn’t from what I have seen. If he comes back it shouldn’t be for more than $2-2.5 mill and a bullpen job.

    Boy I hope I’m wrong and both he and Cook have bounce back years.

    I would like to see DLR come back, but like Agbayani and ProgMatinee I would not overpay for him, and if he walks, so be it. I would think that 3 years at $22-24 mill would be max to give.

    The fun is just starting.

  • Robb | November 9, 2010 | 1:27 pm

    I just don’t see DLR going anywhere else at the end of the day. While he might be able to squeeze a couple million more out of the NY teams, etc., I really do think he has found a home here. If DOD offered him 4 yrs, $28-30mm, he would jump at it. Not sure he is worth it due to injuries and mental stuff, but it’s a very reasonable offer. He just isn’t good enough for a team to give $40mm, plus two draft picks. As far as FA hitters, I hear Lance Berkman wants to come here, and I would bet he is good for 20 HR 80+ RBI’s getting him 400 PA between 1B, RF, and PH/DH in interleague. Not exactly a “make your mouth water” kind of move, but better than the Matt Murton’s of the world. The only way I see the Rockies getting an impact everyday player is to trade a couple of young pitchers like Rogers and/or Freidrich. I would do that in a heartbeat if they could get a Rasmus or Delmon Young.

  • Mike Raysfan | November 9, 2010 | 1:49 pm

    Rich M, I think we are close to be on the same page. We just have different focus points. Obviously mine is pitching and yours seems to be offense.

    Going with the guys you mention might be fine. Not my choice but it could work. Let’s say they go with a rotation you mention. I think how I closed out my paragraph was not far off from your line of thinking:

    “The underachivers darn sure better pick it up and they better make some offensive changes that many fans think need to be made.”

  • Wayne | November 9, 2010 | 2:05 pm

    It’s early in the hot stove, but I’m seeing Berkman as a player in decline, like a Derrek Lee (or Todd Helton).

    I am throwing my early hat in the Troy Glaus ring, as a replacement for Mora/Giambi. RH bat with some pop.

  • Eric G. | November 9, 2010 | 3:09 pm

    I’m just thinking here. Don’t know if this would be a good idea or not but how about letting De La Rosa walk, get a draft pick and use that money we saved to sign Beltre. Trade Stewart for a decent MLB pitcher. Someone that would be cheaper than De La Rosa. Or, we could trade Stewart for a couple of prospects. Maybe a decent 1B prospect? Just throwing it out there.

  • Jasper | November 9, 2010 | 3:53 pm

    I view Cook as a real possibility for a MLB comeback player; I do not view Jeff Francis, Troy Glaus or Lance Berkman nearly as favorably as comeback possibilities. A rotation that includes both Cook and Francis is courting disaster. However, a rotation of U, DLR, Chacin, Hammel and Cook/Francis/Rogers/Deduno/even Morales at #5 is decent with a chance to work out into top notch. That chance, if fulfilled, can carry the Rockies far in the playoffs.

    Mora is a better option for 3rd and 1st relief that Glaus or Berkman in my view. For me, as long as Tracy manages the team, and he will, Iannetta and Smith should be used as trade bait to buttress the offense.

  • Bill | November 10, 2010 | 4:10 pm

    I’m a few days late to this discussion but I’ll chime in anyway. When DLR first came here I couldn’t believe how bad and unreliable a pitcher he was. Then in 2009 in blossomed and despite his injuries he was our 2nd best starter in 2010. And he has been successful here. That should make him, perhaps, give the Rockies a little bit of a discount, but also should make the Rockies consider giving him a bit more than they would to a similar pitcher who hadn’t experienced success in Denver. Even with the humidor many pictures are scared to pitch at Coors Field.

    I didn’t see Agbayani’s stats comparing Hammel and DLR but from the eye test DLR is much better in my opinion. I’m not against all the stats that some teams judge every player by (I started reading Bill James nearly 30 years ago) but sometimes your eyes don’t lie. That being said neither is a great pitcher but DLR, I think, has had more success in winning games and he is left-handed.

    And I know we can use another bat or two, but I think the Giants showed everybody what great pitching can do. With the exception of Buster Posey the rest of the non-pitchers were mostly a collection of rejects.

  • RocketMan | November 10, 2010 | 4:53 pm

    Get DLR! Pitching pitching pitching. Don’t know how else we will compete with SF. 18 games per year we need to split or else. There’s no lineup out there that can overcome SF pitching when it’s on, as was just demonstrated. And yes they did quite well without their own killer lineup. Cody Ross as the postseason power guy??

  • Mike Raysfan | November 12, 2010 | 8:32 am

    It’s starting to look more and more like it will not be cheap to keep Jorge De La Rosa. The New York Daily News is now reporting there may be interest from the Yankees.

  • Eric G. | November 12, 2010 | 9:49 am

    I’m pretty sure DLR isn’t gonna be back. Especially if the Yankees get involved.