Ian Desmond is drawing interest from the Colorado Rockies according to a report from Ken Rosenthal. Desmond, who has remained a free agent largely due to his qualifying offer and draft-pick compensation, "looms as a logical replacement on a one-year deal" for the Rockies according to Rosenthal.
With Jose Reyes' trial date for domestic violence charges scheduled for April 4, Rosenthal suggests that the league can't wait much longer to make a decision on suspension.
While Rob Manfred, MLB's commissioner, shouldn't act hastily on the matter, it's hard to imagine Reyes participating in baseball activities with a court case scheduled for Opening Day.
That would leave the Rockies without a starting shortstop for Opening Day, which makes Desmond a real option. Furthermore, even if Reyes avoids suspension or is only suspended for a portion of the season, Desmond might be a better option anyways.
Both Reyes and Desmond are coming off of their worst seasons at the plate. While Desmond's defense seems to be in decline, Reyes' started its decline long ago and hasn't been worth a positive value to his team since 2012. Furthermore, Desmond suffered from some bad BABIP luck last season, whereas Reyes' was consistent with his career average. Therefore, Desmond should recover some of his past production.
For a rebuilding team, signing a player like Desmond does come with a significant drawback though: draft pick compensation. The Rockies have a pretty good farm system as it is, but perhaps being as noncompetitive as possible actually bodes well for them. While it's tough to sell to the fans, the Los Angeles Dodgers, San Francisco Giants, and Arizona Diamondbacks look like titans of the National League going into 2016. Acquiring Desmond won't help take down the juggernauts.
Perhaps there's a statement to be made though. Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich has some rebuilding of his own personal stock to do, and signing Desmond could help. First, it tells the fans that the Rockies are willing to compete and not waste the young talents of Nolan Arenado. Second, it announces that domestic violence will not be tolerated.
Was there ever a scenario where Reyes actually worked in Colorado? Even without domestic violence allegations, he's the guy that replaced Troy Tulowitzki, and those are tough shoes to fill. Moving on from him as quickly as possible could play very well for Bridich. But, of course, Reyes is still due at least $48 million over the next two seasons, and that isn't an easy contract to get rid of.