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Rockies claim right-hander Kinley off waivers

@harding_at_mlb
December 9, 2019

SAN DIEGO -- The Rockies claimed right-hander Tyler Kinley off waivers from the Marlins on Monday, the first day of the MLB Winter Meetings. Kinley, who turns 29 on Jan. 31, went 3-1 with a 3.65 ERA and one save in a career-high 52 games last season. He has a

SAN DIEGO -- The Rockies claimed right-hander Tyler Kinley off waivers from the Marlins on Monday, the first day of the MLB Winter Meetings.

Kinley, who turns 29 on Jan. 31, went 3-1 with a 3.65 ERA and one save in a career-high 52 games last season. He has a 5.22 ERA with 59 strikeouts and 44 walks in 65 games over four seasons with Miami.

Kinley has been a coveted pitcher, because of his mid 90s fastball and slider combination. The Twins took him in the Rule 5 Draft before the 2018 season but returned him to the Marlins. He has solid Minor League numbers -- a 3.57 ERA and 9.9 strikeouts per nine innings to 3.8 walks per nine, plus a 1.26 WHIP. He has two Minor League options. General manager Jeff Bridich said the Rockies had interest before Kinely was placed on the Major League roster.

“We had interest in Tyler a few years ago in trying to trade for him -- I believe he was not on the roster at that time,” Bridich said. He was a Minor Leaguer that had not been selected to the roster. We’ve thought highly of him for a number of years. We believe with his pitch mix, there’s a power element. We believe that he’s got some good secondary pitches – a slider that can work well in our ballpark.

“We’ve been impressed with the kid,” Bridich said. “He’s been durable. I feel like there’s upside there. I felt like there was a good way to add a guy that could factor into our Major League bullpen hopefully this year and for years to come.

“[Kinley’s velocity] is right in there with some of the other guys that we would have -- the Almontes and the Harveys. It’s not quite Estevez or it’s triple digits, but it’s right in there.”

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.