Monday, January 16, 2012

Colorado Rockies ship Seth Smith to Oakland A's for two pitchers

Seth Smith
The Colorado Rockies completed a trade on Monday, shipping Seth Smith to the Oakland Athletics for pitchers Guillermo Moscoso and Josh Outman. 

The move should put the finishing touches on the Rockies main priority this offseason. That priority? Not getting better on the field, but getting the attitude right in the clubhouse.

The club has now parted ways with Chris Iannetta, Ian Stewart, Huston Street, and Smith. What do all of those players have in common? They had all been accused of being too lifeless. They all had a hard time outwardly showing their emotion. 

Monday's move showed fans that the club is looking for players who are going to wear their passion on their sleeve. They want more fire in the dugout and less stoic looks after losses.

The move added two more names to the list of potential fifth starters that the Rockies will be looking at when they head to Scottsdale in February. That list seems to includes the name of every starter to throw a pitch at the bantam 12-year old Fourth of July tournament last summer. If every candidate got to throw one inning in a spring game, they would probably have to find some time in a minor league game to get Jhoulys Chacin some work.

Moscoso is less of a prospect than he is a minor league journeyman. At 28-years old, and one full Major League season under his belt, his youthful days are behind him. He posted a 3.38 ERA in 128 innings in Oakland in 2011, but gave up 14 home runs, several of which came the gigantic park that used to be known as the Oakland Coliseum. 

As far as Outman goes, his name might be ideal for a pitcher, but he too is no young prospect. He will enter spring training at 27-years of age, with a small Major League resume that features three seasons of work in which he went back-and-forth between Oakland and Sacramento, the home of the A's Triple-A affiliate.

With the trade, the Rockies still have their biggest question of the offseason left to answer. Who will play second base? The answer is in the form of many internal candidates at the moment. It could be Chris Nelson, it could be Eric Young, Jr., it could be Jonathan Herrera or any other number of players. 

However, the more likely answer is that the Rockies are not done with their offseason moves. Most likely they are still looking for a way to trade for a proven second baseman, one who they can rely on for everyday duty. The team certainly has been stocking up starting pitchers that they could use as pieces in a potential trade. 

The Rockies certainly don't look like a team that is finished with it's offseason work. At the moment, they look much more like a team that isn't looking to win in 2012, but in 2013.

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