DENVER -- The Rockies have avoided arbitration with right-handed setup man Wilton Lopez and left-handed pitcher Josh Outman by signing each to a one-year contract, the club announced Wednesday. According to a Major League source, Lopez, who came from the Astros in a trade for right-handed pitcher Alex White, signed for $1.7625 million, and Outman, a starter and reliever last season who bounced between the Rockies and the Minors, signed for $675,000. Lopez is expected to join righty Matt Belisle and lefty Rex Brothers as the setup troika for closer Rafael Betancourt. Outman, who finished strong in the Majors and pitched well as a starter in the Dominican Republic this winter, will compete to be a starter but also could pitch in the Rockies' hybrid role -- one of three pitchers who will pitch on a rotation and could be used to face one batter, for one inning, or for multiple innings.
With the Astros last season, Lopez appeared in 64 games and went 6-3 with a 2.17 ERA and 10 saves. With the Rockies, Outman went 1-3 with an 8.19 ERA in 27 games, including seven starts. Outman also pitched at Triple-A Colorado Springs and Double-A Tulsa. The signings leave the Rockies with four arbitration-eligible players -- right-handed starting pitcher Jhoulys Chacin, center fielder Dexter Fowler, outfielder Tyler Colvin and infielder Jonathan Herrera. Like with Lopez and Outman, the Rockies are focused on reaching one-year deals with Chacin, Fowler and Colvin.
Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.