The Rockies have a major league-best .801 OPS here on June 3, but their staff ERA of 4.24 ranks 26th out of 30. A move will be made later this week to hopefully boost the pitching end of things.
According to MLB.com’s Thomas Harding, the Rockies plan to call up top pitching prospect Eddie Butler on Friday and start him in their series-opener against the Dodgers, one of the teams Colorado is chasing in the National League West standings.
Butler was the 46th overall pick in the 2012 MLB Amateur Draft out of Radford University in Virginia. The 23-year-old righty has compiled a 2.05 ERA and 238 strikeouts in 286 minor league innings and was ranked a Top 50 prospect by MLB.com, Baseball America, and Baseball Prospectus prior this offseason.
The Rockies (28-28) could also soon promote pitcher Jon Gray, the No. 3 overall pick in 2013.
The Rockies have signed free agent outfielder/infielder Ian Desmond for five years and $70 million.
Desmond, 31, played his first season as a full-time outfielder with the Rangers in 2016. Before that he was the Nationals shortstop. He’ll almost certainly be an outfielder in Colorado, as the Rockies have Trevor Story at short.
Desmond hit .285/.335/.446 with 22 home runs, 86 RBI, 107 runs scored, and 21 stolen bases in 677 plate appearances. The Rangers had placed a qualifying offer on him which he rejected, so the Rockies will have to give up their first round pick in the 2017 draft, which is 11th overall. That’s the highest pick a team can surrender under the qualifying offer system, as the first ten picks in the draft are protected.
Ken Rosenthal reports that the Marlins have signed lefty Jeff Locke. Terms have yet to be disclosed.
Locke was non-tendered by the Pirates last week after putting up a 5.44 ERA over 127.3 innings in 2016. He’s just 29 and, even if he’s never been super great or anything, he has pitched better in the past, posting a career 4.16 ERA before last season.