Rockies sign Justin Morneau

Hannah Foslien

Michael Cuddyer will be reunited with a former teammate as he slides back to right field to accommodate Justin Morneau.

After moving Dexter Fowler to the Astros earlier in the day, Colorado continued to make changes to their roster for the coming season -- adding a savvy veteran, and former MVP, to replace Todd Helton.

Morneau is coming off of a decent two year stretch in which he batted .263/.328/.424 for the Twins after missing significant time to injury in 2010 and 2011. His numbers could end up looking a lot better than that playing half of his games at Coors, and he's still just 32 years-old. So it's not like he's completely incapable of returning to his former level of productivity. However, players don't typically show drastic improvement after 30, playing in Coors or anywhere else.

The Rockies appear to believe that Morneau can channel some of the old magic that landed him an MVP and four straight All Star appearances from 2006-2010. The deal had been rumored for several days before the two parties finally agreed on the terms Tuesday evening.

The deal seems to favor both parties to some extent, though arguments against it certainly aren't hard to find. Morneau gets the security of a second guaranteed year and the opportunity to benefit from playing in the Rockies hitter-friendly park. And Colorado gets the first baseman they were looking for, allowing them to move Michael Cuddyer to the outfield. Morneau could bounce back and give his new team a relative bargain, but if he maintains a slash line close to what he's put up over the last two seasons, the Rockies will have him at a fair price.

Colorado probably isn't finished making moves this winter, but they're off to a busy start.

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