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Kyle Kendrick still linked to Rockies in free agency rumors

Colorado needs a fifth starter or, at the very least, rotation depth. Kendrick would provide that, though it wouldn't be pretty.

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Best fits for top 10 remaining MLB free agents - ESPN
We missed this a few days ago, but Jim Bowden claims the Rockies are the most likely team to sign free-agent starter Kyle Kendrick. The Pirates and Padres could also be interested, notes Bowden, but not to Colorado's extent:

" ... given how badly the Rockies need starting pitching, they're probably the one team that would outbid the rest for Kendrick. At this point in his career, Kendrick should take the most money and most years, and I say Colorado is the most likely team to give him that. "

Kendrick, 30, is a below-average pitcher (111 ERA-) over the course of his career but has put together some solid seasons, though none of those have come since 2012. His xFIP is right in line with his ERA for his career, suggesting the guy we've seen is the guy we're going to get.

The Rockies seem comfortable going into the season with Jorge De La Rosa, Jhoulys Chacin, Tyler Matzek and Jordan Lyles as their top four starters, although general manager Jeff Bridich was the slightest bit hesitant about Chacin's health when I spoke with him Tuesday afternoon. That still leaves the fifth spot open for the likes of Christian Bergman, Eddie Butler and Jon Gray -- as well as Chad Bettis and Chris Rusin, both of whom Bridich specifically talked about at length.

Bringing in Kendrick or sticking Rusin in the fifth spot would allow the other players the development time they need, I'm not so sure I'm opposed to that idea rather than throwing one of the four young hurlers into the fire, though Bettis and Bergman would be my first choices if that end up being the case.

I hope to have more on this later today.

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