With the Rockies dealing ace starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez to the Indians yesterday, could the Rockies be considering making more deals? If so, I think they could get some value by dealing closer Huston Street. Street is signed to a team friendly contract that will pay him $7.5 million in 2012 with a player option for $9 million in 2013, which the Rockies can decline by paying him $500,000.
With relievers like Rafael Betancourt, Matt Lindstrom, Matt Belisle and up-and-coming Rex Brothers, the Rockies could look to deal Street to a contender this season, or in the offseason. Street is currently 1-3 with a 3.45 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, and 28 saves in 30 save opportunities. He has an excellent 45-7 K/BB rate in 47 innings pitched, but has given up 9 home runs this season, which is an absurd amount of longballs. Prior to this season, he had never given up more than 7 HRs in a season, so he has already set a career high in HRs allowed and July is not over yet.
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The offseason free agent market is packed with current closers like Jonathan Papelbon, Heath Bell and Jose Valverde, among others, but some will be more expensive than others, yet Street is signed to a team friendly $9 million for 2012, and could be an attractive trade target. The Rays come to mind, as do the Twins, who are currently trying to deal for Nationals closer Drew Storen.
Recently, Rockies manager Jim Tracy announced that Rex Brothers will be his setup man going forward, and with good reason. Brothers is 1-0 in 19.2 innings pitched this season, with a 2.29 ERA, 1.42 WHIP and an excellent 28-11 K/BB rate. In July, Brother has a dominating 17-3 K/BB rate in just 10.1 innings of work, with a 0.87 ERA and 0.87 WHIP.
Brothers is someone to stash for those of you in keeper leagues, as he is the Rockies closer-in-waiting. In 25 appearances in AAA this season, he was 3-2 with a 2.89 ERA, and very high 1.571 WHIP and a 45-15 K/BB rate in 28 innings of work.