The Colorado Rockies made this deal official on Thursday morning, but the minor league prospects involved are different from those reported Wednesday night. Forrest Wall, recently unveiled as our No. 15 Purple Row prospect, is heading to Toronto with Chad Spanberger and a player to be named later:
In exchange for RHP Seunghwan Oh, we have sent 1B Chad Spanberger, OF Forrest Wall and a player to be named later to Toronto. pic.twitter.com/hS1AQc5gY9— Colorado Rockies (@Rockies) July 26, 2018
Below is our story from Wednesday night.
The Final Boss is coming to to the Colorado Rockies.
Sure, Seunghwan Oh isn’t a closer anymore, but that’s just still such a great nickname. The former St. Louis Cardinals closer is coming to the Rockies from the Toronto Blue Jays, according to multiple reports from Jon Morosi of MLB.com and others.
The Rockies are reportedly sending two prospects in the deal: first baseman Chad Spanberger (preseason PuRP no. 29) and Sean Bouchard. Both players are currently with single-A Asheville, with Spanberger the more highly regarded prospect leaving in the deal.
The 36-year-old Oh was a dominant closer for the Cardinals as recently as 2016—he saved 19 games that season with just a 1.92 ERA. He recorded 20 saves for the Cardinals last year but that was a more tumultuous campaign in which he had a 4.10 ERA and ultimately lost the closer’s gig.
This season Oh has rebounded with the Blue Jays, posting a 2.68 ERA in 48 appearances with a pair of saves. Perhaps most encouraging is the fact Oh has bumped his strikeout rate back up to 10.5 K/9 after falling to 8.2 K/9 in 2017.
Where Oh exactly fits in the Rockies bullpen isn’t clear, but given the struggles of that unit this summer he is a welcome addition. He will presumably be in the mix to help set up in the seventh and eighth innings with Adam Ottavino, and he will be an option for manager Bud Black if the team needs a closer on days Wade Davis isn’t available.
This is the kind of low-profile trade that could make a big difference for the Rockies as they piece together their roster for another playoff run. In terms of this specific bullpen, hopefully there is another move or two coming, specifically to add another left-handed arm. If this is in fact the first in a series of moves, it is a solid place to start.