Like much of the Rockies' bullpen, Jason Motte was hot and cold in 2016. The veteran reliever missed much of the first two months of the season with a shoulder injury, but he came out of the gate hot with a 2.81 ERA and 9.0 K/9 in his first 20 appearances. The good times ended abruptly, however, as he was shelled in his next few outings and headed back to the disabled list shortly thereafter with another shoulder issue. The right-hander returned to pitch three scoreless innings in September, but it wasn't enough to salvage his ERA, which ballooned to 4.94 by the season's end. Motte proved that he can still get the ball past batters even at age 34, and he actually found a lot of success on the road (0.84 ERA, 0.94 WHIP). That being said, it'll be tough to gain much value if he continues to struggle at Coors Field considering he'll likely pitch half of his innings there.
Motte reported to spring training without any health issues, Thomas Harding of MLB.com reports. The veteran reliever was sidelined for the first two months of 2016 due to a shoulder injury, but it appears that he'll actually be able to hit the ground running during his contract year with Colorado. Motte was hot and cold throughout last season, concluding the year with a 4.94 ERA and a 9.1 K/9. Given the multitude of other relief options now present in the Rockies bullpen, Motte will likely fill more of a middle relief role unless injuries deplete Colorado's relief corps.
The Rockies have placed Motte on the disabled list with a right rotator cuff strain, Thomas Harding of MLB.com reports. Motte has struggled over his last 10 outing, posting a 9.00 ERA in eight innings with the Rockies. During those 10 outings, Motte gave up at least one run in seven of them. It's unclear at this point when Motte will be able to return, but he will remain behind Carlos Estevez and Jake McGee in the closer pecking order when he does.
Motte holds a 3.38 ERA and 1.03 WHIP in 14 appearances out of the Rockies bullpen this season. After beginning the season on the disabled list, Motte did show some signs of rust upon his return, giving up runs in three of his first four outings. However, since then the 34-year-old has been solid, posting a 9.5 K/9 and 2.70 ERA in 6.2 innings since then. He did allow a home run in both of his past two outings which raised his HR/9 to a rough 2.5 mark, but outside of that he's been one of the better parts of the Colorado bullpen. As long as he continues his current ways (outside of the home run woes), Motte should continue to see decent usage in higher-leverage situations.
Motte (shoulder) was activated off the DL on Wednesday, Jenny Cavnar of Root Sports reports. Motte entered the season on the disabled list due to a shoulder sprain, but he's been able to pitch back-to-back games during his rehab assignment and now he's ready to return to the Rockies' bullpen. The Rockies placed Boone Logan on the DL due to shoulder inflammation in a corresponding move. Motte will be immediately available out of the bullpen Wednesday.
Motte (shoulder) walked a pair and gave up a home run in .2 innings pitched in a rehab appearance with Triple-A Albuquerque on Tuesday. Motte was forced to throw 24 pitches in that brief stint, but only managed to throw 12 of them for strikes. That being said, the important thing is that the right-hander remains healthy, which seems to still be the case. He'll take the next two or three days off, and then he'll pitch in back-to-back games at the end of the week, which can hopefully get him in line to rejoin the Colorado bullpen before the end of the month.