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MLB Trade Rumors: Rockies prepared to upgrade at deadline

Colorado manager Bud Black joined MLB Network Radio Tuesday morning to talk about the trade deadline, Carlos Gonzalez, David Dahl, and more.

Rockies manager Bud Black joined MLB Network Radio’s Power Alley on Tuesday morning and alluded to the possibility that his 54-41 club be active at the trade deadline.

When asked by Jim Duquette and Mike Ferrin about what the Rockies’ plan is heading into the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline, Black didn’t offer the usual “stay the course” or “we like the guys we have” clichés. Instead, the Colorado skipper offered a glimpse of hope for a team trying to stay in command of a postseason spot.

“Teams are reaching out to us and [Rockies general manager] Jeff [Bridich] is reaching out to teams,” Black said. “We’re going to do everything we can to upgrade our ballclub.”

On MLB Network Radio’s sister station, SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio, Bridich told Jim Bowden earlier in the day that the club would acquire “some kind of assistance to [its] bullpen” if any one move were to be made. So far, the Rockies have shown interest in Marlins right-hander David Phelps, according to Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post and USA Today’s Bob Nightengale. Phelps owns a 3.45 ERA with 9.8 K/9 and 4.0 BB/9 in 47 innings this season. While the Rockies have only been tied to Phelps, the reliever market is flush with arms.

Neither Black nor Bridich specifically mentioned the possibility of getting offensive help, despite the Rockies being linked to Tigers outfielder J.D. Martinez. That could be because David Dahl is getting ready to return in the near future, despite what a recent Denver Post report indicates.

“Buddy was misquoted there,” Bridich said during his radio spot, and Black concurred.

“What I said yesterday afternoon is that David needs his at-bats. Right now, it’s his spring training.”

The Rockies have until the end of the month to decide whether to activate Dahl from the disabled list or option him to the minors, and it appears they’re going to take their time. But that doesn’t mean he won’t be back this season.

“As far as the major leagues, I expect [Dahl] to be back if he produces and performs at the minor league level to a point where he deserves to be called up,” Black said. Through six games and 24 plate appearances for High-A Lancaster and Triple-A Albuquerque, Dahl is hitting .333/.417/.571 with a homer, three walks, and four strikeouts.

The timing of Dahl’s return to the Rockies could depend on whether struggling fellow outfielder Carlos Gonzalez is able to break out of his prolonged slump. CarGo, who’s hitting .214/.293/.328 with just six homers in 307 plate appearances, is hard at work trying to diagnose the issue. Black said he’s working with the team on making some adjustments to his swing mechanics. Gonzalez has lost 3 mph from his swing speed and his exit velocity and hard-hit rate are way down from previous seasons.