The pitching minded Rockies traded infielder Clint Barmes to the Astros today and received right-handed pitcher Felipe Paulino in return. Though he did hit twenty-three home runs in 2009, Barmes has struggled at the plate for the last couple of years. In 2010, he played his way out of the Rockies’ future plans and became an expendable bargaining chip. By all accounts, Barmes was a beloved teammate and will be missed around the Rockies’ clubhouse.
Paulino ranked as a top ten Astros prospect in 2007, 2008, and 2009. He has limited Major League experience as a starter and a reliever, but this move will pay off greatly if he can become a dependable middle of the rotation guy for the Rockies. The scouting report on Paulino is that he has great stuff and no command. Perhaps the steady hand of Bob Apodaca can help Paulino reign in his abilities, but we must be realistic with our expectations for young Feli. More than likely, he will wind up in the bullpen and get an occasional spot start. Let’s just hope this is not the Rockies’ biggest move this off-season.