Past & Present: Rockies at the trade deadline

Mitchell Boggs was the Rockies most significant in-season acquisition in 2013. - USA TODAY Sports

With the 2013 non-waiver trade deadline come and gone, a look at the moves the Rockies have made at the deadline throughout the years.

While the Rockies made only minor moves before this year's non-waiver trade deadline, that has not always been the case. Here's a year-by-year look at how they've done at the deadline from 1993 to the present:

1993:

Record at deadline: 36-66 (33 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: BUY
Most significant trade: Traded Brad Ausmus, Doug Bochtler and a player to be named later (Andy Ashby) to the San Diego Padres for Greg Harris and Bruce Hurst (July 26, 1993)

Desperate to add some veteran presence to the pitching staff of their first-year expansion club, the Rockies gave up promising prospects Ausmus and Ashby to the Padres for two experienced arms in Harris and Hurst, neither of whom lived up to the pitchers they were in San Diego. The Rockies also acquired Kent Bottenfield from the Expos ten days before the Ashby/Ausmus deal.

1994:

Record at deadline: 50-56 (2.5 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: N/A

With a players' strike looming in less than two weeks, the Rockies made no moves in the entire month of July in 1994.

1995:

Record at deadline: 48-39 (3 game lead in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: BUY
Most significant trade: Traded Juan Acevedo and Arnold Gooch to the New York Mets for Bret Saberhagen and a player to be named later (David Swanson) (July 31, 1995)

In the first deadline blockbuster in franchise history, the Rockies acquired two-time Cy Young Award winner Saberhagen from the Mets to help their playoff push. The 31-year-old made nine starts with the Rockies in '95, posting a 6.28 ERA in 43 innings. He gave up six runs, five earned in four innings to the Braves in Game 4 of the 1995 NLDS.

1996:

Record at deadline: 54-52 (3 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: N/A

Sitting third in the NL West at the deadline, the Rockies made no moves leading up to the 1996 trade deadline, though they did sign Jeff Huson as a free agent a couple weeks later.

1997:

Record at deadline: 51-57 (8 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: SELL
Most significant trade: Traded Craig Counsell to the Florida Marlins for Mark Hutton (July 27, 1997)

Out of the race, the most significant move the Rockies made in 1997 was after the non-waiver deadline on August 19, when they traded Eric Young to the Dodgers for Pedro Astacio. After moving from the Rockies to the Marlins, Counsell scored the game-winning run in Game 7 of the 1997 World Series.

1998:

Record at deadline: 48-60 (21.5 games back in NL West, 13 games back of NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: SELL
Most significant trade: Traded Ellis Burks to the San Francisco Giants for Darryl Hamilton, Jim Stoops and a player to be named later (Jason Brester) (July 31, 1998)

The second of the Blake Street Bombers to leave the Rockies was Burks, moved to the Giants for a 33-year-old outfielder with a career OPS of .746 and a guy who pitched all of four MLB innings in his career, all with the Rockies in '98. I'm not sure what Bob Gebhard was trying to accomplish with that move.

1999:

Record at deadline: 46-57 (11.5 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: Traded Darryl Hamilton and Chuck McElroy to the New York Mets for Brian McRae, Rigo Beltran and Thomas Johnson (July 31, 1999)

Not sure what Gebhard and the Rockies made the Hamilton trade for, especially considering that McRae was traded away just ten days later. I do know that Gebhard was fired at the end of the season.

2000:

Record at deadline: 50-53 (7 games back in NL West, 6.5 games back of NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: SELL
Most significant trade: Traded Mike Lansing, Rolando Arrojo, Rich Croushere and cash to the Boston Red Sox for John Wasdin, Brian Rose, Jeff Frye and Jeff Taglienti (July 27, 2000)

In his first season as general manager, Dan O'Dowd was out to clean house in 2000. In addition to significant roster turnover in the offseason, he made two significant deadline deals, dealing Lansing and Arrojo to Boston and swapping Tom Goodwin for Todd Hollandsworth.

2001:

Record at deadline: 44-61 (16.5 games back in NL West, 15.5 games back of NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: SELL
Most significant trade: Traded Pedro Astacio to the Houston Astros for Scott Elarton (July 31, 2001)

At 17 games under .500 the Rockies went into full-on fire sale mode in July of 2011. In addition to Astacio, they traded away Neifi Perez, Todd Walker and Ron Gant leading up to the deadline. July 2001 was also month in which the infamous Chone Figgins for Kimera Bartee trade was made.

2002:

Record at deadline: 48-58 (16 games back in NL West, 11 games back of NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: SELL
Most significant trade: Traded Todd Hollandsworth and Dennys Reyes to the Texas Rangers for Gabe Kapler, Jason Romano and cash (July 31, 2002)

Less of a sell mode than in the two previous years, the Rockies still were offloading pieces at the deadline in 2002. In addition to the Hollandsworth deal, they sent John Thomson to the Mets in a deal that returned a package anchored by Jay Payton. They also acquired Sandy Alomar Jr. to be a backup catcher on July 29.

2003:

Record at deadline: 56-54 (13.5 games back in NL West, 4 games back of NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: Traded Mike Watson to the Arizona Diamondbacks for Tony Womack (July 18, 2003)

Above .500 at the deadline for the first time since 1996, the Rockies stuck to making minor moves such as the acquisition of Womack and moving Ben Petrick to the Tigers for Adam Bernero. It didn't work, they went 18-34 in the last two months of the season.

2004:

Record at deadline: 45-58 (15.5 games back in NL West, 12 games back of NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: N/A

The Rockies didn't make a trade before the non-waiver deadline in 2004, but did deal Larry Walker to the Cardinals on August 6, officially ending the Blake Street Bombers era.

2005:

Record at deadline: 36-67 (14.5 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: SELL
Most significant trade: Traded Preston Wilson to the Washington Nationals for Zach Day, J.J. Davis and cash (July 13, 2005)

The Rockies had the worst record in baseball at the 2005 trade deadline, and traded away Wilson as well as Joe Kennedy and Shawn Chacon as the "Gen R" era looked to build for the future.

2006:

Record at deadline: 50-54 (4.5 games back in NL West and NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: Traded Scott Dohmann and Ryan Shealy to the Kansas City Royals for Jeremy Affeldt and Denny Bautista (July 31, 2006)

The biggest trade the Rockies made in 2006 actually happened in early June, hardly a "deadline" move, that saw them send Eli Marrero to the Mets for Kazuo Matsui, who would be a key part of the team the next season.

2007:

Record at deadline: 53-51 (3.5 games back in NL West and NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: N/A

The eventual NL champions didn't make a single trade in July, but did gain 5.5 games in the NL West race over the course of the month. They did acquire Ramon Ortiz, the winning pitcher in the tiebreaker against San Diego, on August 15 in exchange for Matt Macri.

2008:

Record at deadline: 49-60 (7 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: Traded Juan Castro to the the Baltimore Orioles for Mike McCoy (July 19, 2008)

The Rockies did not contend in defending in their NL title in 2008, and really only made the smallest of moves leading up to the trade deadline, though they did acquire Jason Grilli in late April.

2009:

Record at deadline: 55-47 (8 games back in NL West, 1 game back of NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: BUY
Most significant trade: Traded Connor Graham to the the Cleveland Indians for Rafael Betancourt (July 23, 2009)

In a push for the playoffs, the Rockies made moves to bolster their bullpen leading up to the trade deadline, adding Betancourt and Joe Beimel. The pair combined for a 2.84 ERA in 38 innings down the stretch to help the Rockies win the Wild Card for the second time in three seasons.

2010:

Record at deadline: 53-50 (8 games back in NL West, 5.5 games back of NL Wild Card)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: N/A

2010 was a year pretty devoid of roster moves at all for the Rockies. They added Manny Delcarmen at the waiver deadline at the end of August, and that was about it.

2011:

Record at deadline: 51-56 (10 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: SELL
Most significant trade: Traded Ubaldo Jimenez to the Cleveland Indians for Alex White, Joe Gardner, Matt McBride and a player to be named later (Drew Pomeranz) (July 30, 2011)

With the team and its ace faltering, the Rockies made perhaps its biggest deadline move since the acquisition of Bret Saberhagen in 1995, sending Jimenez to Cleveland for a package built around Pomeranz. I discussed the trade in detail in this space last week.

2012:

Record at deadline: 37-63 (17.5 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: SELL
Most significant trade: Traded Marco Scutaro to the San Francisco Giants for Charlie Culberson (July 27, 2012)

With the 2012 season already having devolved into a train wreck, the Rockies cut bait with two veterans that were supposed to help the team return to contention, dealing Scutaro to the Giants as well as trading Jeremy Guthrie to the Royals for Jonathan Sanchez a week earlier.

2013:

Record at deadline: 51-57 (7.5 games back in NL West)
Buy/Sell/Hold: HOLD
Most significant trade: Traded cash to the St. Louis Cardinals for Mitchell Boggs (July 9, 2013)

Not quite in contention, but feeling they were set up well for 2014, the Rockies stayed quiet at the 2013 trade deadline, but did shore up their pitching depth with Boggs and Armando Galarraga earlier in July.

As you can see, the Rockies have a history of not doing much at the deadline. Most of their deadline deals have been minor ones, and the two blockbusters they have executed, the Saberhagen and Ubaldo trades, have ended poorly for them.

What remains to be seen is if the decision to neither buy nor sell in 2013 was the correct one, but as much as people want to judge it now either way, only time will tell.

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