The Rockies have designated outfielder/first baseman Matt McBride for assignment, Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post tweets. His roster spot was needed for Justin Morneau, who was activated from the 60-day DL.
After putting up an excellent 2014 campaign, Morneau lasted just 104 plate appearances this season before going down with head and neck issues. Given his history of concussion difficulties, he and the team understandably took a cautious approach.
With a month to go this year, Morneau will have a chance to rebuild his value somewhat. He had not hit terribly well even before the injury — his .290/.317/.450 batting line looks good at first glance, but is actually below league average when adjusted to account for Coors Field. And he’ll be entering his age-35 season in 2016.
As things stand, it seems likely that Colorado will spend $750K to buy out the $9MM mutual option that remains on Morneau’s contract. In that case, he’d once again hit the open market, and surely would attract a host of teams looking to take a chance on him.
McBride, 30, has not done much with his limited playing time this year. He continues to deliver solid results at the Triple-A level, but has never earned an extended look in the big leagues. McBride is the last part of the return for Ubaldo Jimenez left in Colorado, though of course he’s previously been outrighted off of the 40-man roster.