This is the time of year when trade talks permeate baseball, when fans and media alike spend most of their days dreaming of possibilities that most of which will never become reality. But today we can report with certainty that that by the deadline, the Colorado Rockies will have made a major acquisition. Two of them actually.
As has been widely reported, Chad Bettis will make his first rehab start less than 24-hours from the publishing of this article, on Thursday for the Hartford Yard Goats.
We also learned tonight that David Dahl is (somewhat surprisingly) already back out on the field, in the lineup tonight (Wednesday) for the Lancaster Jethawks. He is playing left field and batting second.
This means that, per the MLB collective bargaining agreement, there is now a clock on both of these players, who must return within 20 days (30 for Bettis) from starting their rehab assignments. This means by August 1, Dahl must either be added to the major league roster or optioned back down to Triple-A. He does have three options remaining.
Dahl has missed all of the 2017 season after suffering a stress reaction to a rib and later having a setback when trying to take live batting practice, though he's claimed to be pain-free for more than a month now. He does have a history of sustaining big injuries, only to bounce back quickly, having done so in 2013, 2015, and now 2017.
Last season, Dahl played in 63 MLB games, starting with his debut on July 25. He slashed .315/.359/.500 with seven home runs, five stolen bases, and 24 RBI for the remainder of the season.
Dahl is a true five-tool talent and long considered a top prospect in baseball, and Bettis led the team in innings pitched a season ago. While Bettis likely won't be along until just after the deadline, both player should be considered heavily in conversations about the Rockies' roster moving into August and September.