Jim Tracy, Rockies players visit the Aurora shooting victims

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The Rockies did a good thing:

After playing a game in Phoenix on Wednesday night, the Rockies arrived in Denver at about 3 a.m. Thursday. On the message board inside the clubhouse, a notice was posted asking for volunteers to meet with victims at the hospital.

Jim Tracy and 11 players showed up to visit the victims of last week’s Aurora shooting: Todd Helton, Michael Cuddyer, Eric Young Jr., Matt Belisle, Josh Roenicke,Christian Friedrich, Jordan Pacheco, Josh Rutledge, Rex Brothers, Drew Pomeranz, Adam Ottavino and Mike Ekstrom.

Tracy said that it would have been a bigger group but that since they were visiting the intensive care unit they had to limit their numbers.

Check out the story. Lots of good quotes from the players putting things in perspective.

Rays trade Jake Odorizzi to Twins

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The Rays have traded right-hander Jake Odorizzi to the Twins, per team announcements on Saturday evening. The Twins will receive minor league shortstop Jermaine Palacios in the deal. Despite previous speculation, recently-DFA’d outfielder Corey Dickerson was not included in the trade.

With Odorizzi, the Twins finally have the front-end starter they’ve been seeking all winter. It’s a bargain deal as well, as the 27-year-old righty is under contract through 2019 and didn’t require the club to part with any of their top-shelf prospects in the trade. Odorizzi will be looking to stage a comeback in 2018 after a dismal performance with the Rays last year, during which he eked out a career-worst 4.14 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 through 143 1/3 innings.

Palacios, 21, ranked no. 27 in the Twins’ system last season. He split his year between Single-A Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers, raking a combined .296/.333/.454 with 13 home runs and 20 stolen bases in 539 plate appearances. He’s expected to continue developing at shortstop, though he’s also seen limited time at second and third base during his four-year career in the minors.