ROCKIES

Colorado Rockies trade away fan favorite for minor league hurler

Dec 19, 2022, 12:17 PM
Connor Joe...
Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

The Connor Joe era is over in Denver after two seasons of warming Rockies fans hearts with a nice smile and decent play Colorado shipped him to Pittsburg for a pitching prospect.

Joe, 30, just wrapped up his third season in the big leagues. The corner outfielder and first baseman played 174 games in purple, slashing .252/.351/.393 with 15 homers and 63 RBI.

Joe fought testicular cancer in 2020 and sat out the year, just after he finally made it to the show. The Rockies were able to sign him heading into the 2021 season. Now he goes back to the Pirates, who originally drafted him 39th overall in 2014. He was traded away in 2017 when the Bucs acquired Sean Rodriguez from the Braves, starting a series of transactions that has made Joe a baseball nomad.

“Connor did a good job for us last season, especially at the beginning of the season, with his ability to play right field and other positions,” Bill Schmidt told MLB.com on Sunday. “We felt we were trading from a position of depth.”

Joe was a solid utilityman for the Rockies and could be a  fourth outfielder on a winning club. But Colorado needs a lot more help than that and that’s why they’re taking a shot on Nick Garcia.

Garcia, 23, was a third-round pick in 2020 by the Pirates from Chapman University. The righty spent last season mostly as a starter at High-A Greensboro, where he went 4-4 with a 3.66 ERA and 109 strikeouts to 46 walks in 113 innings.

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