The Colorado Rockies, like most teams, desperately need some relief help. The Rockies bullpen did improve as the season went along as their bullpen ERA through July was 5.41 (which was worst in baseball) but it was 4.17 from August 1 on, which was 16th in baseball.
That was partially due both to the success of some of their younger relievers, like Lucas Gilbreath, who had an ERA of 0.42 from August 8 through the end of the season, and some veterans, like Robert Stephenson, who had an ERA of 1.61 in the final two months of the season.
But the Rockies still need some bullpen help this offseason. The Rockies have had their fair share of issues with signing relievers on the free agent market just to have them look like Triple-A pitchers. So why not sign one that proved for years that he could pitch at Coors Field: Adam Ottavino.
Former Colorado Rockies reliever Adam Ottavino could be a free agent target this offseason.
After spending the 2021 season with the Boston Red Sox, Adam Ottavino is on the free agent market again. Ottavino, 35, was with the Rockies from 2012 through 2018 and he proved that he could pitch well at Coors Field.
In 2021, Ottavino had an ERA of 4.21 (113 ERA+) in 69 appearances. However, he did the exact opposite of the Rockies bullpen, where he was great at the beginning of the season and faltered as the season progressed. Through July 3, Ottavino had an ERA of 2.57. Through August 7, his season ERA ballooned up to 3.65. After July 3, his ERA was 6.33. That was due to a high walk rate (5.14 BB/9) and an elevated hit rate (.282 batting average).
As a result of that and his age, Ottavino will not be getting a huge contract. That and his success at Coors Field in the past could help the two come to an agreement.
Overall in his career, he has appeared in 181 games at Coors Field and opponents have hit .231/.303/.351 against him there with an ERA of 3.36. His career ERA is 3.60.
He isn’t going to get a three-year deal for $27 million like he did when he left for the Yankees so he should be in the Rockies price range this time around.
The Rockies will need to make more moves than just add Ottavino to help their bullpen but it would be a start–a start that would have a better track record at Coors Field than the larger free agent deals that the Rockies made in recent years.