It’s been a busy week over at 2001 Blake Street in Denver. The hope, but not a promise, is that these smaller pieces of business take care of a few larger things.

Tuesday brought the announcement of a trade with the Boston Red Sox that added RHP Connor Seabold to Colorado’s 40-man roster for a player to be named later or cash consideration.

Seabold, 26, was a third-round selection out of Cal State Fullerton in 2017 by the Philadelphia Phillies. He was dealt to Boston in a four-player trade in 2020 before making his big league debut in 2021.

With the Red Sox, the Newport Beach, CA product made six starts between 2021-22 totaling 21.1 innings. During that time, he spent longer spells at Triple-A Worcester going 12-5 with a 3.39 ERA (140.2 IP, 53 ER) through 30 starts.

A right forearm strain put him on the injured list in 2022. If healthy, Seabold could be a  candidate to battle for a spot in the Rockies rotation this spring. 

International Signing Period Begins

Sunday was the first day for signing international free agents and Colorado was active.

All amateur players from outside the United States are eligible to be signed, so long as they are at least 16 years old. 

Teams are allotted bonus pools depending on their market size. Not only can some pool money can be traded, but teams can lose money depending on whether they have exceeded the luxury tax threshold or signed a Major League free agent who rejected a qualifying offer. (In the case of the Los Angeles Dodgers, they checked off both boxes and have the lowest bonus pool of $4,144,000, same as the Texas Rangers who signed Corey Seager and Marcus Semien last offseason.)

Only eight teams have more pool money than the $5,825,500 the Rockies have at their disposal. As such, they made a big splash by signing 17-year-old Robert Calaz from the Dominican Republic to a $1.7 million signing bonus on day one.

Calaz is a 6’3” power-hitting outfielder that boasts excellent speed on the bases and in the outfield. He’s projected to play center field, and the second-largest signing bonus in franchise history suggests Colorado thinks he’s a middle of the diamond type of player.

According to MLB.com, Colorado has also signed four other players of note: Alessander De La Cruz, SS Jeremy Ciriaco and RHP Alison Zacarias from the Dominican Republic, and OF Yeiker Reyes from Venezuela. 

2023 Coaching Staff Is Set

After adding Warren Schaeffer as the third base and infield coach as well as Hensley Meulens as the hitting coach to the big league staff in November, the rest of the player development staff for the minor leagues was finalized on Friday.

Pedro López takes over for Schaeffer as the new manager for the Triple-A Albuquerque Isotopes. López enters his 19th season as a coach and becomes the third ‘Topes manager since being affiliated with the Rockies in 2015.

Bobby Meacham takes over as bench coach after serving as an assistant coach with the Phillies in 2020-22, and Chris Michalak is the new pitching coach following a stint with the Washington Nationals.

Robinson Cancel has been promoted from Low-A to become the manager at High-A Spokane while his bench coach Steve Soliz becomes the manager for the Fresno Grizzlies. Cesar Galvez, the complex league manager for the Rockies last season, is his bench coach in Fresno. 

Outside of new trainer Coy Coker, promoted from Spokane, the entire Double-A Hartford staff remains the same.

Colorado welcomes back Marcel Lacheman into the fold after serving as a Special Assistant to the GM from 2003-2011. Newly retired Scott Oberg transitions to the coaching side as a special assistant to player development and scouting while former Rockies’ catcher Dustin Garneau calls it a career to serve as the organization’s catching and game planning organizer. 

Minor League Transactions

Since the new year, Colorado has made some minor league signings in hopes of improving their depth.

The Rockies struck a minor league deal with utility player Harold Castro on Saturday. The 29-year-old has been with the Detroit Tigers for the last five years, amassing 15 home runs and 125 RBI in 1,215 plate appearances during that time. The infielder/outfielder from Venezuela will be insurance for manager Bud Black if Alan Trejo cannot fill the super utility role or if Ezequiel Tovar is not ready for Opening Day. 

Detroit Tigers first baseman Harold Castro (30) high-fives teammates after scoring against the Los Angeles Angels during second-inning action at Comerica Park in Detroit on Saturday, Aug. 20, 2022.
Tigers Ang2

LHP Ty Blach returns to his childhood team on a minor league pact after tossing 44.1 innings last season with the Rockies to the tune of a 5.89 ERA. LHP Josh Rogers, 28, also signed a minor league deal following nine starts with the Washington Nationals the last two seasons.

Ten-year veteran LHP Fernando Abad will provide bullpen depth should any issues arise with the two left-handers on the current roster, Lucas Gilbreath and Brent Suter. The 37-year-old has a 3.77 ERA in 400 MLB games. He spent 2022 with the Seattle Mariners’ Triple-A club, posting a 3.56 in the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League.

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