Huston Street of the Colorado Rockies pitches during the ninth inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park in San Diego, California. The Rockies won 3-2. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
At first glance, this doesn't appear to be the kind of trade a rebuilding, small-market team would normally make. The San Diego Padres acquired veteran closer Huston Street from the Colorado Rockies for a player to be named later, according to Rockies MLB.com beat writer Thomas Harding. In Harding's tweet, we learn the reason San Diego was willing to make this trade:
Rox agree to send RHP Huston Street to Padres for Minor Leaguer. Pads will pick up most of $8 M guarantee. Expec Rox to make free-agent move
The tweet doesn't say how much of the contract the Padres will pick up, but even "most" of it would still make Street affordable to San Diego, considering at one point they were willing to extend since-departed closer Heath Bell, who would have been more expensive.
In 2011, Street saved 29 games in 33 opportunites for Colorado with a 3.86 ERA. He also struck out 8.5 hitters per nine innings while walking just 1.4. Although Harding's tweet indicates Colorado could pick up a free agent closer (and Ken Rosenthal tweets the Rox could be interested in Brad Lidge), Rafael Betancourt, who closed while Street was out with tricep soreness last summer, could move into the Rockies' closer role.