The MLB offseason, a period of trades and free agent signings, has always been exciting to me. Even if it doesn't necessarily include the blockbuster moves witnessed in the NBA or NFL year after year, the offseason sees a handful of new faces join the organization. For a team whose struggles are as well documented as the Rockies', it's the little things that matter. Right? Right. This winter, however, has seen a slew of moves significantly shakeup the rosters of our brethren in the NL West. A number of deals made at the Winter Meetings are of particular note. Hopefully this article can shed some light on the moves our division rivals have made, as my fellow writers here on Purple Row have done terrific work breaking down our own moves. Here's a quick breakdown of the major moves and acquisitions of the Colorado Rockies and the teams in our division this offseason.
P.S. Please forgive me if the article seems a bit disorganized, as finals are well under way and I've been preparing to move back to the good old United States this weekend. Also, if any new deals occur between the time of writing and when this article is posted, I might not be able to get to them.
Dave Stewart's been making moves in Phoenix, with the latest being a deal sending Wade Miley to the Boston Red Sox that seems all but finalized. While the Diamondbacks' official website is reporting a snag in the deal, namely some minor difficulty regarding an undetermined player, multiple news outlets are reporting the deal as good as done. In addition to said player, Arizona is receiving two young arms in Allen Webster and Rubby De La Rosa. I honestly don't know too much about the arms the D-backs are receiving, but from what our friends over at AZ Snake Pit are saying, it seems like they're moving Miley before he gets too expensive for two young arms that are under team control for some time.
They've also traded Miguel Montero to the Chicago Cubs for two prospects in Zack Godley and Jeferson Mejia. Montero was a familiar sight behind the plate for the D-backs for many seasons, but being on the wrong side of thirty and possessing a burgeoning contract made him a prime candidate to be moved. The Diamondbacks receive two prospects who seem like gambles, but more importantly get rid of a huge contract. Moving forward, it's likely they'll need to sign someone to replace him in the short-term, as internal options do not seem either qualified or ready for the Show.
A good chunk of the money they save by dealing Montero will go to Cuban outfielder/third baseman Yasmany Tomas, who signed for six years at $68.5 million. The Diamondbacks can opt out after four years, but will be hoping Tomas' raw power potential develops into something special.
The Diamondbacks were also involved once again in a three-way trade with the Detroit Tigers and New York Yankees, sending Didi Gregorious to New York and receiving Robbie Ray and Domingo Leyba from the Tigers, who themselves received Shane Greene. The deal followed the acquisition of Jeremy Hellickson from Tampa Bay for prospects Andrew Velazquez and Justin Williams.
The Rockies have been far less active this offseason. Their most recent move, trading Josh Rutledge to the Angels for Jairo Diaz, is indicative of their desire to add arms to a bullpen that was, quite frankly, awful this past season. The Rockies' other trade of note was with the Dodgers, sending Juan Nicasio west for cash or a PTBNL. Austin House, acquired in a trade for Rule 5 Draft choice Mark Canha, will join Diaz as an arm that can hopefully make some sort of impact in the bullpen.
In addition to Rutledge and Nicasio, Michael Cuddyer and Matt Belisle will be donning new uniforms for the Mets and Cardinals respectively. It's sad to see the latter two go for sure, but it's is a good move for the club in the long-run. Pending other moves in the outfield, it gives Corey Dickerson the chance to prove he's ready for a full-time role and allows the Rockies flexibility regarding payroll.
Los Angeles Dodgers
The Dodgers have made a dizzying number of moves these past couple of months, so forgive me if I've forgotten a major one, because frankly I'm losing count. Matt Kemp has been dealt to the Padres in a multi-player deal that sent Kemp, Tim Federowicz, and some amount of cash reportedly north of $30 million to San Diego for Yasmani Grandal, Joe Wieland, and Zach Eflin.
A pair of trades with the Marlins and Angels sees Howie Kendrick, Chris Hatcher, and two minor leaguers join L.A. The Marlins receive Dee Gordon, Dan Haren, Miguel Rojas, and cash, while the Angles receive Andrew Heaney and either cash or a PTBNL. Unfortunately for Miami, however, Haren is supposedly considering retirement. If he does, Miami will receive the $10 million Haren is owed.
The Dodgers have also reportedly traded for Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins, who will presumably serve as a temporary replacement for the departing Hanley Ramirez. It's unclear who exactly they've sent east, but it is generally thought that they've dealt Eflin and 2013 second round pick Tom Windle.
They've also acquired relief pitchers Joel Peralta and Adam Liberatore from Tampa Bay in exchange for Jose Dominguez and Greg Harris. And, last but not least, the Dodgers have also signed Brandon McCarthy to a four-year, $48 million contract. McCarthy, of course, is coming off of a very solid year for the Yanks having gone 7-5 while posting a career best 2.89 ERA, because Yankees. Is it any surprise that they pick up a guy who was coming off of a three-year stretch of subpar pitching with an ERA+ of 85, 94, and 75 and ends up posting a career best 134 in New York? Didn't think so.
The Padres' biggest deal thus far was their acquisition of Kemp and Federowicz from the Dodgers (see above). The Padres have been pretty quiet otherwise, signing old friend Clint Barmes to help provide depth after non-tendering Everth Cabrera. Kemp will provide the Padres a much needed bat, and they'll be hoping Alexi Amarista can continue his good play from the last few weeks of the 2014 season.
And finally, everyone's favorite team! While it's certainly annoying that the Dodgers are seeming increasingly dangerous, I'll take solace knowing that the Giants are looking pretty much the same. Then again, their roster has been pretty similar for the past few years and well, yeah.
Thus far, the Giants offseason has been characterized by departures rather than acquisitions. The most significant, of course, is Pablo Sandoval's signing for Boston, a team that's been seriously loading up. According to ESPN, Sandoval's deal is a five-year, $95 million contract that includes a team option for a sixth year at $17 million. Other than the departure of everyone's favorite panda, free agents Michael Morse, Jake Peavy, Dan Uggla, and Ryan Vogelsong are currently no longer with the Giants.