Felipe Paulino Rumors

Rockies Measuring Trade Interest In Paulino, Morales

The Rockies are "expected to continue measuring trade interest" in hard-throwing pitchers Felipe Paulino and Franklin Morales, reports Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post.  At least one NL Central team has expressed interest in Morales, he adds.  Both pitchers are out of options, so the Rockies can't demote them without exposing them to waivers.

Paulino, 27, was acquired from the Astros in November for Clint Barmes.  He throws hard and gets strikeouts, but allows tons of hits and plenty of walks and home runs.  He's relieving now, but has 34 career starts to his name.  Paulino missed a good chunk of 2010 with a shoulder injury. 

Morales, 25, was considered the eighth best prospect in all of baseball prior to the 2008 season, according to Baseball America.  He has a higher profile than Paulino, having made a couple of playoff starts in '07 and served as the Rockies' closer at times.  There might be five or six lefties in the Majors who throw harder than Morales.  However, he's prone to flyballs and walks and has also battled shoulder injuries.  Paulino and Morales are projects, so they make the most sense for non-contenders.

Rosenthal On Chapman, Braves, Rockies, Norris

Aroldis Chapman went on the disabled list with shoulder inflammation today, after Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported on the Reds’ options for proceeding with the struggling Cuban left-hander. Here’s the latest on Chapman plus notes from around the league:

  • A veteran scout insists that the Reds need to demote Chapman and make him a starter, but pitching coach Bryan Price isn’t so sure that a demotion is the way to go. He points out that Sandy Koufax and Randy Johnson took time to develop. “Both struggled with command until they got enough work to figure out how their body works, how to put their hand in the right position to throw quality strikes,” Price said.
  • The Braves would ideally add a leadoff hitter and put Martin Prado second in the order, according to Rosenthal. He suggests the Braves could target leadoff options Jose Reyes, Grady Sizemore, Denard Span or David DeJesus via trade or free agency after the season.
  • The Rockies appear to be concerned about losing out of options relievers Felipe Paulino and Franklin Morales to waivers.
  • Astros GM Ed Wade says Bud Norris has become a much more mature pitcher. The 26-year-old right-hander has 60 strikeouts in 50 innings this year.

Players To Avoid Arbitration: Tuesday

Today is the deadline for players and teams to submit arbitration figures. The sides will then settle on a salary between the team's proposed number and the player's proposed number or go to an arbitration hearing. Arbitration eligible players are under team control, so the clubs don't risk losing them – it's a question of how much the players will earn.

Yesterday, 11 players avoided arbitration. We could see just as many agreements trickle in today and we'll keep you posted on them right here and with our Arb Tracker. The latest updates will be at the top of the post:


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Renck On Rockies’ Pitching Targets

Jon Garland, Hiroki Kuroda and Jake Westbrook were three of the top names on Colorado's wish list of free agent starters, but all three signed elsewhere.  Troy Renck of the Denver Post (via Twitter links) chimes in about some other arms that have caught the Rockies' interest.

Odds & Ends: Pirates, Royals, Sizemore, Matsui

Links for Saturday…

Astros, Rockies Swap Paulino & Barmes

The Astros acquired Clint Barmes from the Rockies for Felipe Paulino, according to the team. GM Ed Wade says he pursued Barmes for his defensive versatility and gap power. Barmes said on a conference call that he's been told he'll mostly play shortstop, his preferred position.

The Rockies, who were not necessarily going to offer Barmes arbitration, get something in return for the 31-year-old. Barmes said that he had hoped to work something out with the Rockies, since he has enjoyed playing in Denver, but is looking forward to joining a young Astros team that finished the 2010 season strong.

Barmes was a non-tender candidate heading into his final season of arbitration eligibility. After hitting 23 homers in 2009, he hit just 8 homers this year and his batting line fell to .235/.305/.351. Barmes earned $3.33MM in 2010 and figures to pocket $4MM or so in 2011.

Paulino, 27, posted a 5.11 ERA with 8.1 K/9 and 4.5 BB/9 in 91 2/3 innings for the Astros this year. He'll be arbitration eligible for the first time this offseason (as a Super Two). In each of the past three seasons, his average fastball velocity has surpassed 95 mph. Paulino struggles against lefties, but is considerably more effective against right-handed hitters.

Odds & Ends: Yankees, Brewers, Mets, Paulino

Some links for Tuesday evening…