Rockies trade for 2, but quiet on Deadline day

Catcher Lucroy, setup man Neshek bring veteran presence to young pitching corps

Rockies trade for 2, but quiet on Deadline day

WASHINGTON -- A pair of tested veterans in right-hander Pat Neshek and catcher Jonathan Lucroy were the reinforcements the Rockies acquired before Monday's non-waiver Trade Deadline.

Colorado -- holding the second National League Wild Card position, a half-game behind the Wild Card-leading D-backs and 5 1/2 ahead of the Brewers -- is believed to have pursued a relief pitcher whose contract was club-controlled beyond this year but no such deal materialized. No indications emerged that the club pursued starting pitching, meaning the team's playoff pursuit remains on the shoulders of a young group that consists of four rookies and three young veterans.

Adding Neshek, on Wednesday from the Phillies for three Minor Leaguers, and Lucroy, on Sunday from the Rangers for a player to be named, amounted to the big pre-Deadline news.

Black on trade for Lucroy

Neshek strengthens the setup group for closer Greg Holland although questions remain, with lefty Jake McGee on the 10-day disabled list with a mid-back strain and righty Adam Ottavino hoping a solid inning Sunday in Washington is the start of shedding season-long control issues. Lucroy's presence provides postseason experience to help a starting staff that has none.

The lack of news at the Deadline has impact, now and in the future, as well.

Rookie outfielder Raimel Tapia is currently on the Major League squad. Sophomore outfielder David Dahl, completing a comeback from a rib problem that has kept him out of the Majors this season, and outfielder-first baseman Jordan Patterson, both playing well at Triple-A Albuquerque, are on the 40-man Major League roster for depth now and possible usefulness when the roster expands to 40 in September.

The Rockies also got to hold on to their top two offensive prospects. Middle infielder Brendan Rodgers, the Rockies' top prospect and No. 9 in MLB according to MLBPipeline, continues his development at Double-A Hartford. Corner infield prospect Ryan McMahon (No. 3 Rockies, No. 65 overall) -- who has been in Triple-A for two months and has one Pacific Coast League Player of the Month award and two Player of the Week awards -- is also still around, and could even provide a lift before September, the way Seth Smith did as a pinch-hitter during the 2007 run to the World Series.

Even more, the Rockies protected the pitching depth that general manager Jeff Bridich has been building since taking the job in 2014.

Injuries to Chad Bettis (testicular cancer), Tyler Anderson (left knee), Tyler Chatwood (right calf strain) and Jon Gray (navicular stress fracture of the right foot) forced the team into using rookies German Marquez, Kyle Freeland, Jeff Hoffman and Antonio Senzatela. Results have been enough to keep the team in the playoff hunt.

Much of the pitching quality is either in its early Triple-A days (Yency Almonte and Sam Howard) or lower, but all remain available as the Rockies enter what they hope is a competitive window for the next few years.

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. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.