Earlier tonight, Ken Rosenthal reported that Jorge De La Rosa could act sooner, rather than later, on the free agent market. The latest news from Rosenthal is that De La Rosa and the Colorado Rockies are close to a three year deal to bring the starter back to Colorado.
I mentioned earlier that it didn’t seem like the Rockies were strong contenders for De La Rosa, mostly because they didn’t want to go beyond three years, and they believed another team would add a fourth year. However, De La Rosa has a good relationship with Rockies’ pitching coach Bob Apodaca, who he credits with his success since coming to Colorado. There is no official deal yet, and no reasoning from De La Rosa, but I’d guess that the relationship with Apodaca played a big role in this move.
For the Pirates, it means that they will have to turn to the injury risk pitchers for a starting pitching upgrade. They have been linked to Jeff Francis, Brandon Webb, and Justin Duchscherer, although De La Rosa was their top target and they haven’t had anything more than reported interest with the other pitchers. Currently the Pirates rotation would include Paul Maholm, James McDonald, Ross Ohlendorf, Charlie Morton, and Brad Lincoln, although the Pirates have said their preference is to have Morton and Lincoln battling for the fifth starter role, and to accomplish that, they would need to add an external starter.