Todd Frazier is one of a few free agents the Rockies are considering as they look to stabilize their first base position for the 2018 season, per Thomas Harding of MLB.com. First baseman Mark Reynolds and corner outfielder Carlos Gonzalez, both of whom played for Colorado last season, are the other players that the Rockies are said to be strongly considering.
Colorado is a spot that hasn’t come up previously as a possible landing spot for the 31-year-old Frazier. Despite the fact that he has 94 games of big-league experience at first base, the thought has been that he’d prefer to play his natural position of third base wherever he signs. That spot would obviously be blocked in Colorado with Nolan Arenado at the hot corner, but Frazier could fill the Rockies’ vacancy at first — a spot that has primarily belonged to free agent Mark Reynolds over the past two seasons.
Frazier, who has hit at least 27 home runs in each of the past four seasons, would surely have the opportunity to hit more homers than he ever has before playing 81 games at Coors Field. With a .245/.321/.459 career slash line, he’d be a solid addition to a lineup that features a pair of great table setters in Charlie Blackmon and DJ LeMahieu and a dominant run producer in Arenado.
Since Frazier would have to move across the diamond and the Rockies have prior experience with the other two players under consideration, however, it might make more sense for them to bring back Reynolds or Gonzalez. Reynolds, 34, has posted a .274/.354/.471 slash line with 44 homers in 1,034 plate appearances for Colorado over the past two seasons, and because he has bench experience and is likely to accept a one-year contract, re-signing him would be the easiest way for the Rockies to ensure that they’ll be able to integrate highly-regarded corner infield prospect Ryan McMahon into the lineup whenever he’s ready.
Re-signing Gonzalez, of course, would allow Ian Desmond to focus on first base — the position the Rockies signed him to play last winter — with Gonzalez, Blackmon, Gerardo Parra, David Dahl, and perhaps Raimel Tapia then comprising Colorado’s outfield rotation. Gonzalez has enjoyed nine productive seasons with the Rockies, posting a .292/.351/.521 slash line over that span, though his production dipped quite a bit last season and it’s debatable how much he has left in the tank.