Gonzalez, 32, has remained on the open market all offseason after hitting free agency for the first time back in November. Obviously his apparent decision to turn down a lucrative four-year extension from the Rockies last spring turned out to be a poor one, as he’ll now be faced with hitting the free-agent market again next offseason and will likely have difficulty getting a multi-year deal as a 33-year-old.
Gonzalez, who has hit .288/.346/.511 over a 10-year big-league career but posted a pedestrian .262/.339/.423 line with 14 homers last year, figures to slide back into the starting right field role, pushing Gerardo Parra to a fourth outfielder role and once again blocking Colorado’s promising trio of young outfielders — David Dahl, Raimel Tapia, and Mike Tauchman. Gonzalez could probably use a platoon partner, as he hit just .206/.241/.321 against lefties last year, though all four of Parra, Dahl, Tapia, and Tauchman are left-handed hitters. For what it’s worth, Parra had a reverse split last year, hitting .347/.377/.429 against lefties, so he could be a candidate for that role.
Gonzalez’s return frees up left fielder Ian Desmond to be a platoon partner with Ryan McMahon at first base if necessary, thus significantly reducing the chances of the Rockies re-signing first baseman Mark Reynolds.