Rockies Rumors: Atkins, Barrett, Fukumori

What are the Rockies up to as they plot to defend their NL pennant?  Tracy Ringolsby and Troy E. Renck have the latest.

  • Ringolsby says Garrett Atkins is staying put, which should help the third baseman relax a little bit.  This echoes Renck’s sentiments yesterday.  Renck also noted that the Rox won’t be offering Atkins a multiyear deal anytime soon.
  • Yesterday Renck said that after Yorvit Torrealba, the Rockies were considering Jose Molina, Paul Lo Duca, Jason Kendall, and Ramon Castro for catcher.  However Ringolsby says today that Michael Barrett and Kendall are the main targets.  Renck has come on board with that today, noting that Dan O’Dowd has contacted the agents for Barrett, Kendall, and Lo Duca.
  • Ringolsby adds that the Rockies are exploring the Japanese reliever market, namely Hitoki Iwase and Kazuo Fukumori.  Fukumori might appeal as the cheaper of the two.
  • Meanwhile the Indians, Brewers, Phillies, and Mets like Brian Fuentes.  We’ve also read about the Tigers’ interest.  The Rockies’ willingness to trade him may depend on the progress of 2007 top draft pick Casey Weathers.
  • Jason Jennings might be leaning toward signing with the Padres.  This echoes an obscure article we found back in July.
  • Renck says that if the Rockies don’t hear by Tuesday about their offers to Kaz Matsui, Matt Herges, LaTroy Hawkins, and Torrealba, they’ll start looking at other options. 
  • Renck adds that the Rockies have checked in with Ron Mahay‘s people.  He’s getting popular.
  • The Rockies are out on Jon Garland – they can’t fit his $12MM salary into the 2008 budget.  Matsui moving on would clear $3MM though.
  • The idea of locking up Troy Tulowitzki long-term is being entertained.  It probably wouldn’t happen until after the 2008 season though.

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