In another somewhat surprising and bold move -- a move that is counter to the perception surrounding the Dan O'Dowd era -- the Colorado Rockies have optioned Rex Brothers and Brandon Barnes to the minors according to Thomas Harding of MLB.com.
The move of Rex Brothers is particularly interesting. He has often been called the Rockies' closer of the future and he looked ready to assume that part after excellent campaigns in 2012 and 2013. But no one had a more disastrous 2014 (in a season in which he had plenty of company) than Rex Brothers, and the Rockies seem to have admitted to themselves that he needs some time in a lower pressure environment to iron some things out.
Also not expected, at least not entirely, is the demotion of Brandon Barnes who saw a great deal of action in the Rockies depleted 2014 outfield. He never did find a consistent rhythm with the stick and despite his spectacular defense is also being given a chance to regain some confidence in the minor leagues.
In more expected news, Matt McBride has been reassigned to the minors as well. It was a bit surprising that he had lasted as long as he had in MLB camp to begin with, though he applied himself quite well and may be in the mix for a call-up should injuries occur during the season.
In not-at-all-a-surprise news, relief pitcher Scott Oberg was also sent down but is now much the same position as Matt McBride.
#Rockies option LHP Rex Brothers, OF Brandon Barnes, reassigned RHP Scott Oberg, OF Matt McBride to Minors— Thomas Harding (@harding_at_mlb) April 2, 2015
These moves also mean that the feel-good Rafael Betancourt story can continue with a return to the major leagues. Everyone should be happy for this guy, and he could be a wild card that helps turn a historically bad bullpen into an asset in 2015.
Also, welcome to the ball club Rafael Ynoa.
It was a good day for guys named Rafael.
Today's resignation that Rex Brothers, no matter his taste of success at the MLB level, needs some work and should not be given a spot over guys who've been much more consistent of late is another signal to those looking for such things that the Jeff Bridich era is indeed a new era for the Colorado Rockies.