Earlier today we heard that the Colorado Rockies were “checking in” with free agent starting pitcher Ervin Santana. It made sense, as they had expressed interest in Santana earlier this winter and because the club is nervously awaiting the results of an MRI on the throwing shoulder of their number one starter Jhoulys Chacin.
Jon Heyman of CBS reported the team’s interest in Santana on Monday.
rockies check in on ervin santana after chacin needs mri (but they maintain hope on jhoulys) http://t.co/AhtUgA9p0b
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) February 24, 2014
Now Rockies team officials are disputing that report, according to Thomas Harding of MLB.com:
A Rockies official on Monday denied that the team was interested in free-agent right-hander Ervin Santana….
“…The hope is Chacin’s right shoulder-biceps issue is not serious enough for the Rockies to need to make a signing. The official said the club reached out to Santana early in the free-agency process, but it backed away and does not have renewed interest for several reasons.”
One has to get pretty creative to find a way for the Rockies to sign Santana in the first place. Granted, the team’s first round pick is protected because it is in the top 10, meaning it would cost them only a second round pick (34th overall) in compensation to sign Santana. On the other hand, that’s still a fairly high pick, the Rockies are near their payroll threshold for the year already, and Santana’s extreme fly ball tendencies make him a dicey fit in Colorado to say the very least.
The Rockies might not be out on Santana completely, but it is likely a long shot, especially given Harding’s report.