After weeks of trade speculation surrounding Seth Smith and just a few hours after inking the outfielder to a 2012 contract, the Rockies have traded him to the Oakland Athletics for a pair of starting pitchers, Josh Outman and Guillermo Moscoso.
Outman spent the early part of last season recovering from Tommy John surgery and eventually went 5-8 with a 3.70 ERA for Oakland, while Moscoso had a 3,38 ERA in 21 starts for the A's.
I've been suggesting for some time that the Rockies look into Outman as a possible fit, the left hander has had very solid groundball rates in the minors and seemed to be a possible bargain with a crowded A's rotation. He should provide stiff competition to Kevin Slowey for the final spot in the Rockies rotation this Spring, or alternatively could allow for further minor league seasoning of rookie Drew Pomeranz. That the Rockies were also able to add Moscoso, a more FB oriented pitcher with sharp movement on his pitches, particularly a cut fastball, that could play up in the bullpen or perhaps be used in another deal seems to be a bit of a coup for Dan O'Dowd. With these two additions, the Rockies rotation for 2012 would seem to be pretty much set (well, set as far as who will be competing for the five slots) and the team can focus on filling out its bullpen or looking for a fit at second base.
UPDATE: It seems the Rockies might be reversing that above plan, with Moscoso perhaps set to compete for the rotation slot and Outman being looked at as a bullpen arm... or maybe not, says O'Dowd via Troy Renck:
"We will have a raging competition in spring for spots''