At the moment, the Colorado Rockies bullpen is in a state of flux. Jake McGee, Pat Neshek and Greg Holland are all free agents and could or could not be back with the team. We have thrown out ideas and possibilities for who could be in the bullpen (including Zach Britton in this article) because Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich is on record here as saying he is looking to add to Colorado’s bullpen, whether through free agency or trade.
One name that was potentially linked to the Rockies in this MLB.com article was New York Yankees reliever Dellin Betances. The Yankees are reportedly looking to shave some of the salary off and Betances could well be on the move, according to reports.
Certainly, Betances has the talent to be an impact reliever and potential closer for the Rockies. A four-time All-Star for the Yankees, Betances struck out 100 in 59.2 innings last season and has posted over a 3.00 strikeout/walk ratio over the last four seasons. It is the walks, however, where Betances has had so many issues over the years, including last season when he walked 44 in those 59.2 innings.
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The power is certainly there. The control, however, often is not. It’s one of the reasons why then-Yankees manager Joe Girardi was quick to pull the trigger on the 29-year-old right-hander in the 2017 American League Division Series against the Cleveland Indians. From there, he had very little time on the mound against the Houston Astros in the American League Championship Series.
Betances made $3 million last year in his first year of arbitration with the Yankees. However, his request for a higher salary before the arbitration process did not sit well with the team, making Betances start the season with a cloud hanging over his head in the organization’s eyes.
It all adds up that the Yankees could move Betances in the offseason. Could Colorado be a destination? Yes, but there are plenty of minuses that would come with any kind of trade. After saving 22 games over the last two seasons, teams (including the Rockies, if they were to land him and not re-sign Holland) would be likely to try him in a save situation. That could be a feast or famine situation with the control Betances flashes or lacks depending on the moment. It would also require the Rockies to part with some of their young talent, and the Yankees are expected to ask for a high return on Betances if he moves.
Could the Rockies trade for Betances? Anything is possible. However, the move would likely not be the best swap the team could make as it continues to search for the identity of its 2018 bullpen.