Castillo, Matsui Possible Options For Colorado?

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports writes that the Rockies are looking to upgrade from utilityman Melvin Mora as their best backup option at second base.  To that end, the Mets have contacted Colorado about a possible deal for Luis Castillo.  The veteran infielder has a .256/.341/.299 line heading into Thursday's action and has improved his defense (a 2.5 UZR/150) this season after his horrendous -12.7 UZR/150 in 2009.

As Rosenthal mentions, the Rockies wouldn't have to worry about the $12MM owed to Castillo for 2010 and 2011 given that the Mets would be picking up the large majority of that tab to clear the way for Daniel Murphy to get some reps at second base.

If the Rockies aren't interested in working out a deal with New York, another possible answer to their depth problem could be a former Rockie. MLB.com's Thomas Harding proposes that if Kazuo Matsui clears waivers on Monday and is officially released by Houston, Colorado might be a logical landing spot for the second baseman.  Matsui has just a .352 OPS in 78 plate appearances with the Astros this season, but Harding sees Matsui as a minor-league signing that would provide cover for regular second baseman Clint Barmes (who himself is struggling this season with just a .612 OPS heading into today's action).  

Matsui's greatest success in the majors came with the Rockies, where he hit .300/.353/.426 in 579 plate appearances from 2006-07.  Harding mentions that Matsui was popular in the clubhouse and apparently left no hard feelings with management when he left Colorado to sign a three-year, $16.5MM contract with Houston after the Rockies' pennant-winning 2007 campaign. 

Given that the Astros would still be paying the $5MM that Matsui is owed for 2010, this would be a low to no-risk signing for the Rockies to make.  The club would've liked to have been prospect Eric Young make a play for the second base job, but with Young looking at a lengthy stay on the DL with a leg injury, a veteran option like Matsui or Castillo could make sense.


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