The Colorado Rockies and free-agent reliever Mark Melancon have "mutual interest" in a deal, according to FanRag Sports' John Perrotto, who covered the general manager meetings on-site this week.
Melancon, a native of Colorado, would be one of the biggest free-agent signings in the short history of the Rockies franchise if the two sides are able to work out a deal. The 31-year-old right-hander would theoretically be a positive addition to Colorado's bullpen; in parts of eight big league seasons, Melancon owns a 2.60 ERA with 8.2 K/9 and 2.0 BB/9.
The market for free-agent relievers might go off the rails a bit this offseason, but Melancon likely presents an affordable, yet still high-end, option. An evaluator who talked to Perrotto concurred:
"Chapman and Jansen get all the attention because they throw hard but I love Melancon," a scout from an NL team. "He has that cutter that just disappears when it gets to home plate and he never seems to ever blow a save."
Rockies owner Dick Monfort recently alluded to a payroll increase, and with Jeff Bridich's insistence on upgrading the Rockies' NL-worst bullpen, the club appears to have a shot at making something work with Melancon.
One potential road block is the division-rival San Francisco Giants; Melancon is reportedly in the Bay Area meeting with their front office, and it might be difficult for the Rockies to match or exceed a potential offer given the large disparity in payroll between the two clubs.