Here’s a fun tidbit from Troy Renck of the Denver Post yesterday:
Rafael Betancourt couldn’t live with the uncertainty. There was path to retirement after he he tore his right elbow ligament last Aug. 22.
“But I didn’t want to wonder what if?” Betancourt said on Friday morning.
The 38-year-old elected to undergo surgery and said Friday that his recovery is advancing as planned. He will visit Dr. James Andrews next week, and should begin throwing soon after the exam. Betancourt plans to visit the Rockies for two weeks in spring training in March, and hasn’t given up on pitching during the 2014 season. The Los Angeles Dodgers contacted him as a free agent, but he’s committed to returning with Colorado.
“If I pitch again, it will be with the Rockies. I can’t see myself anywhere else at this point in my career. I have really enjoyed five years there,” Betancourt said.
I guess Ned Colletti really does want all the closers. Obviously, we have no idea if that “contact” was anything more than a 30-second phone call or a even a text message to check in on his arm, and this also could have been from before Chris Perez & Brian Wilson were signed. Obviously, Betancourt wasn’t interested anyway. Still, it’s an interesting approach to take, similar to how Texas signed Joakim Soria to a two-year deal knowing he’d miss most or all of the first year after elbow surgery. Betancourt toiled in relative obscurity for years in Cleveland, but has served as Colorado’s closer since late 2012, and has long been an underrated reliever — in 11 big league seasons, he has a 9.5 K/9 mark while walking just a hair over two per nine.