In 2007, when the Rockies made their World Series run, Brian Fuentes led the team in saves with 20.
However, this stat is skewed, as Fuentes had a streak from June 22 - June 29 where he blew four straight saves, and lost his closer role to Manny Corpas. Corpas finished off the season picking up 19 saves in three months.
Corpas started off very shaky in 2008, and was forced to hand the role back to Fuentes; which in turn landed Fuentes $17.5 million dollars when he hit free agency after the season.
In addition, Colorado said bye-bye to their all-star outfielder Matt Holliday, and received former Athletics closer Huston Street as one of the three players in return.
The acquisition of Street started a debate in Colorado, which finally came to a halt today when Street, not Manny Corpas, was announced the Rockies opening day closer.
Street spoke highly of the announcement saying, “It's obviously what I wanted. I think it's important to realize that this is just the beginning. This is the start of a huge responsibility to the team."
Once a dominant closer, Street struggled through a 2007 season with off and on injuries. In 2008, Street seemed to have lost his way, and role, to rookie Brad Zeigler at the end of July.
The trade to Colorado in early November was a surprise, but this may be the chance to show people that he can still pitch.
Street, however, hasn’t fared too well this spring. He has posted a 5.23 ERA.
On the other hand, Corpas has excelled with a 1.00 ERA in five appearances.
Manager Clint Hurdle cited Street’s movement and velocity in his pitches as to his decision.
That being said, Street’s job security is about as good as every other American. If he falters, Corpas will be ready to step-up and attempt to hold his own in the closer role.
Either way, having these two assets will be very crucial to the success of the 2009 Colorado Rockies (and if you don’t believe me, look at the 2008 Tampa Bay Rays and what their bullpen meant to that team).