"The Rockies' quest for rotation depth will bring them Jason Marquis. The team will acquire the veteran right-hander from the Chicago Cubs for reliever Luis Vizcaino, according to a baseball source with knowledge of the clubs' discussions.
The trade, which is expected to be announced next week and was first reported by ESPN, will bring the Rockies a back-of-the-rotation starter, something they have long been seeking, and rid them of a reliever who proved to be a huge disappointment in his only season with the club followed by a brush with the law.
With Marquis, 30, due to make $9.875 million next season in the final year of his contract, the Cubs felt they had to move him to gain payroll flexibility necessary to accomplish other roster needs. If Vizcaino rebounds and helps the Cubs, fine, but the Cubs will accomplish their objective of moving Marquis and freeing up about $5 million.
Vizcaino, 34, who signed a two-year, $7.5 million contract last December, has $3.5 million coming in salary next season followed by a $500,000 buyout on a $4 million club option. That option becomes guaranteed if Vizcaino pitches in 68 games next season and doesn't end it on the disabled list.
The Rockies are expected to receive around $1 million from the Cubs, who will also be responsible for the $4 million owed Vizcaino. Hence, the Rockies will have to pay Marquis about $5 million for one season and the Cubs will save roughly that amount.
Marquis went 11-9 with a 4.53 ERA in 29 starts last season. In five career appearances at Coors Field, Marquis is 3-0 with a 2.51 ERA, allowing eight earned runs in 28 2/3 innings.
Marquis, who began his career in the Atlanta organization, has pitched for the Braves, Cardinals and Cubs and is 79-70 lifetime with a 4.55 ERA.
Marquis profiles as a fourth or fifth starter in a Rockies rotation that also includes Aaron Cook, Ubaldo Jimenez, left-hander Jeff Francis and left-hander Jorge De La Rosa. Others vying for the rotation include left-hander Greg Smith, acquired from Oakland last month in the deal that sent Matt Holliday to the A's, left-hander Franklin Morales and right-handers Jason Hirsh and Greg Reynolds."