The Rockies offseason has been incredibly quiet. Besides the signing of Miguel Olivo and the departure of Yorvit Torrealba, little will be different for the 2010 Rockies. While the Rockies were the best team in the National League after Jim Tracy took over on May 29th, some fans believe that the team should not rest on its laurels and should go after some free agents.
One area for improvement could be on the offensive side at second base. No one argues that incumbent Clint Barmes is a great defender. With him and Troy Tulowitzki up the middle it doesn’t get much better. However, Barmes’ approach at the plate leaves a feeling of something lacking. Despite a power surge in which he hit 24 home runs, Barmes’ on-base percentage was under .300. That is an unacceptable number for an every day starter.
One option that the Rockies have been linked to is free agent Orlando Hudson. Hudson is also a slick-fielding second baseman, but he brings a spark at the plate. Although age is taking a toll on the switch-hitter, Hudson hit .283 with a .357 on base percentage.
Acquiring Hudson may not be as difficult as most would think. The four time gold glove winner was not offered arbitration by the Dodgers, and many teams looking for a second baseman have filled their needs elsewhere, meaning Hudson could come cheap on a one-year deal.
The front office has downplayed any efforts to talk with Hudson, making it clear that they want to fill their need for a power-hitting right hander who can come off the bench and play both third base and first base.
Hudson would not fit that role, but with Brad Hawpe getting time at first base and Barmes relegated to bench duty, the Rockies could easily slide Barmes into third base and play Hawpe at first base when needed.
If Hudson can be had for cheap, he may be worth taking a chance on.