The Colorado Rockies have made a big splash in the free agent pool, as the team has reportedly signed All-Star outfielder Ian Desmond to a 5 year contract that is worth $70 million, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. The deal includes an option that would make the deal worth $83 million over six years. It was reported earlier in the day that Desmond had set his focus on one unknown team and planned on signing before the day's end.
Desmond, 31, used a one-year deal with the Texas Rangers in 2016 to record a bounce-back campaign after a dismal 2015 season with the Washington Nationals. Slotting in to the Texas outfield, Desmond made the All-Star team, as he batted a .285/.335/.446 slash line and swatted 22 home runs while driving in 86 runners. This includes an OPS+ of 104 and 21 stolen bases, as well as a cumulative 2.7 WAR, his highest mark since the 2014 season.
As a consequence of signing Desmond, the Rockies will lose the 11th overall pick in the 2017 MLB Draft, as Desmond rejected a qualifying offer from the Rangers when the expired Collective Bargaining Agreement was still in place.
According to Rosenthal, it would appear that Desmond would return to the infield, as the Rockies will primarily play Desmond at first base. There is still a chance, however, that Desmond could play in the outfield, which would cause an unwanted logjam, as David Dahl, Charlie Blackmon, and Carlos Gonzalez, among others, are seen as the 2017 starters. There is speculation that Charlie Blackmon would be traded as a result, which would ease the log-jamming issue and give the Rockies some nice prospects, which would make up for losing their 1st Round pick in 2017.