The Rockies made a valiant late season charge at a playoff spot, but they ultimately fell short and will miss the postseason for the second time in four years. We've already heard that GM Dan O'Dowd wants to acquire an impact bat this offseason, but he now tells Troy Renck of The Denver Post that re-signing Jorge de la Rosa is a priority.
"He is a priority. I don't know how to gauge that yet," O'Dowd said. "Adding a middle-of-the-rotation starter is a priority. And we would certainly like that to be Jorge."
De La Rosa missed close to three months with a torn flexor band on his left middle finger, but he was rock solid in the 20 starts he was able to make: 121.2 innings, 4.22 ERA, 8.4 K/9, 4.1 BB/9. Aside from a drop in strikeout rate (9.4 K/9 in 2009), the southpaw was able to repeat his 2009 breakout performance.
The Rockies tried to lock De La Rosa up last winter to a two-year, $8.75MM contract with an option for a third year, but he instead opted for a one-year deal that paid him $5.6MM in 2010 and allows him to hit the open market after the season. The 29-year-old could be in line for an annual salary of $7MM or more on a multi-year deal, so he likely made himself some extra money by passing on Colorado's offer.