Chris Humphreys-US PRESSWIRE
The Rockies need starting pitching, but aren't willing to move Michael Cuddyer unless the price is right.
That's the belief around Major League Baseball, according to MLB.com's Thomas Harding. According to baseball sources, the Rockies are holding out for a big return on the outfielder/first baseman. Furthermore, if they don't get a package they like, one source said, Colorado is happy to hang onto Cuddyer.
Cuddyer, who signed a three-year, $31.5 million deal last off-season, has come up in talks with other clubs. A right-handed hitter with power signed to a relatively team-friendly contract, Cuddyer could bring back the starting pitching the Rockies want. But according to Harding, Colorado's front office "has made it clear that they highly value Cuddyer" and won't give him up easily.
Among the teams with whom the Rockies have talked trade are Cincinnati, Atlanta, and Seattle. The Reds are likely out of any outfield deals after acquiring Shin-Soo Choo from the Cleveland Indians. Atlanta, which signed B.J. Upton to a five-year, $75 million contract in November, is still looking for a corner outfielder, but Harding writes that talks haven't gone far. The Mariners have been after outfielders all off-season, and with top target Josh Hamilton no longer on the market, could emerge as a suitor for Cuddyer.
In 101 games last season split between right field and first base, Cuddyer hit .260 with 16 home runs and 101 runs batted in, but saw his season end early due to an oblique injury. Along with Cuddyer, the Rockies have also talked about moving center fielder Dexter Fowler, but nothing has come of that either.