DENVER -- After fortifying the bullpen with a successful December shopping spree, Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich said on Friday that he will take a deep breath before putting the finishing touches on the offseason plan.Bridich set catching and relief pitching as priorities. He filled those by signing catcher Chris
DENVER -- After fortifying the bullpen with a successful December shopping spree, Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich said on Friday that he will take a deep breath before putting the finishing touches on the offseason plan.
Bridich set catching and relief pitching as priorities. He filled those by signing catcher Chris Iannetta (two years, $8.5 million), bullpen setup men Jake McGee and Bryan Shaw (three years, $27 million apiece), and -- on Friday -- closer Wade Davis (three years, $52 million).
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The presumed hole is a corner bat, with first base or the corner outfield being places to fill that need. But the free-agent market for those positions has been moving slowly, so there is time. Bridich also said there is time to consider a possible contract extension for All-Star third baseman Nolan Arenado -- signed for 2018 at $17.75 million, with arbitration-eligibility in '19.
That means time to see if the Rockies will reunite with first baseman Mark Reynolds, who has been solid, and at times spectacular, over the last two years, or right fielder Carlos Gonzalez, who made three All-Star Game appearances over nine years.
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"After everybody gets back in and the holidays are done, we'll regroup and formulate that," Bridich said. "But we're certainly still keenly watching the market. It's been an interesting one to this point. There are a lot of players that are still unsigned."
Bridich acknowledged earlier this month that the club was staying in communication with Reynolds, who hit .267 with 30 home runs and 97 RBIs last season. The GM also on Friday remained open, but non-committal, about Gonzalez, who hit .262 with 14 home runs and 57 RBIs during a sub-par 2017 after managing 97 RBIs in 2015 and 100 in '16.
"He's part of the market," Bridich said. "As I've said before, I'm not going to specifically say yes or no to that."
On reports the Rockies had trade talks with the Pirates about multi-position spark plug Josh Harrison, Bridich said, "I'm not sure where the Josh Harrison stuff comes from."
With young starting pitching and a bullpen fortified for the next three years, a natural question will be whether to focus on locking up Arenado, one of the game's top stars, before he becomes eligible for free agency after the 2019 season.
"There definitely are conversations that will happen with Nolan," Bridich said. "That's a natural part of where he's at in his career and where we're at as an organization, and the relationships that have been built over a long period of time now between Nolan and the organization.
"It's not like there's a specific time clock on it. But for right now we're focused -- as is Nolan -- on getting ready for Spring Training. We'll figure that stuff out."
Thomas Harding has covered the Rockies since 2000, and for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb and** like his Facebook page**.