The Colorado Rockies on Thursday selected Triple-A first baseman Mark Canha from the Miami Marlins in the major league phase of the Rule 5 Draft. The Rockies then traded Canha to the Oakland Athletics for right-handed pitcher Austin House and cash considerations.
Taylor Featherston, whom the Cubs immediately flipped to the Los Angeles Angels for cash, was left unprotected after hitting .260/.322/.439 in Double-A. The Angels will have to offer him back to Colorado unless they keep him on their 25-man roster for the entirety of 2015. Featherston's Tulsa teammate, Winkler, will have to be stashed on the disabled list and paid the league minimum while he recovers from Tommy John surgery. Unless he is activated and eligible to play for 90 days next season, Winkler will have to be retained on the Braves' roster for the entirety of 2016.
Winkler posted a 1.41 ERA with 71 strikeouts and only 17 walks in 70 innings for the Drillers before being lost for the season with an elbow injury.
Canha, 25, hit .303/.384/.505 with 20 home runs in 2014 for the New Orleans Zephyrs of the Pacific Coast League. He's a career .285/.375/.474 hitter in five minor league seasons. Canha might have been a decent addition to the roster as a platoon partner for Ben Paulsen in the event that, say, the Rockies worked out a trade involving Justin Morneau.
However, the Rockies turned Canha into House, a 23-year-old reliever who struck out 12 batters per nine innings at two minor league stops last season. With the additions of House and Jairo Diaz, it's pretty clear that the Rockies entered the Winter Meetings with a plan to eventually stock their bullpen with power arms who can miss bats.
Tago hasn't been able to put it together as a professional. The 22-year-old righty owns a 6.52 ERA with more walks than strikeouts in just under 300 innings spanning four seasons. Simon, meanwhile, is a 24-year-old finesse reliever who struck out 41 batters and walked 21 in 75⅔ innings in Double- and Triple-A last season.