The Colorado Rockies took a chance on Greg Holland last season after missing all of the 2016 season due to injury. That risk for the Rockies paid off, as they got a guy who was able to close out 41 games for them in 2017. It was only a one year deal, however, and the Rockies are ready to find someone to replace him. They offered Holland the qualifying offer which he ended up declining and now he will test the market to see if he could get a multi-year deal with a salary greater than $17.4 million. It’s definitely not a guarantee the Rockies can resign him as other teams like the Cardinals are already lining up. Teams are always trying to improve their bullpen so the Rockies need to look to other ways of getting their late-in-the-game reliever in case they are unable to resign Holland.
General managers have to make decisions left and right when it comes to the offseason, trying to find the cheapest, most efficient way to improve their team either for the coming season or for the future. Rockies GM Jeff Bridich will have to make the decision of either spending money on free agents or giving up pieces of their farm system and trade for players who could be valuable parts of their bullpen.
Through trade, one guy the Rockies are looking at is New York Yankees reliever, Dellin Betances. The 29-year-old reliever has been a part of the Yankees dominant bullpen for a long time but had multiple periods where he struggled last season with his control. The amount of walks he gave up over the course of last season is concerning, especially since the Rockies are looking for somebody to fill the closer role and are unsure whether Betances could rise to the challenge.
Through free agency, the Rockies are looking at two guys: Brandon Kintzler and Brandon Morrow. Kitzler performed well as the closer with the Minnesota Twins last season before being traded to the Washington Nationals and serving as their setup man. He finished last season with a 3.03 ERA but it’s a bit concerning because his K/9 went down, his BB/9 went up, and his GB% dropped seven percent from the previous season and three percent below his career average. Kitzler is most likely on a decline and that’s the last thing the Rockies need to be worrying about, especially when it comes to the hitter-friendly Coor’s Field. Morrow, on the other hand, was the complete opposite. He finished last season with a 2.06 ERA and saw a huge spike in his K/9, going from 4.5 in 2016 to 10.3 in 2017.
Betances, Kitzler, and Morrow aren’t the Rockies only options when it comes to finding additional pieces to their bullpen. Bridich and the team also have to worry about keeping the team together as other guys like Pat Neshek are free agents themselves. This offseason is going to be very busy for the Rockies. Their team next year could either be much improved or have suffered too many losses in free agency that they will not be able to replicate what they did in 2017.