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04/17/09 9:48 PM ET
Corpas to take over closing duties
Righty replaces Street amid newcomer's early struggles
By Rhett Bollinger / MLB.com
LOS ANGELES -- Rockies manager Clint Hurdle named Manuel Corpas the team's closer Friday because new addition Huston Street has struggled so far this season. Street allowed a two-run home run to the Cubs' Derrek Lee on Wednesday in a non-save situation to raise his ERA to 13.50, prompting Hurdle to say he'd think about making a change while the Rockies had Thursday off. Hurdle announced the change before the Rockies played the Dodgers on Friday night. "I'm going to have Corpas doing the closer's role and try and find a way to find a workload and consistency for Street," Hurdle said. Hurdle made the decision to name Corpas the closer even though the right-hander has also has suffered from some inconsistency. Corpas allowed a two-run home run to the Phillies' Chase Utley in the eighth inning Sunday in the Rockies' 7-5 loss, but Hurdle said it was just one bad pitch. "Other than one ball that was hit out of the ballpark, we're seeing the sink and the normal arm slot," Hurdle said of Corpas, who has 23 career saves. "I think we've seen a much different guy since the last two weeks of Spring Training. A get up and go. We don't want him to over-think things." Street, who was acquired from the A's in the Matt Holliday trade, took the news well, according to Hurdle. His new role will be to pitch when Hurdle sees fit instead of locking him into a setup role. "To back him away now, I think is best served for both us and him," Hurdle said. "It gives him an opportunity to get more involved and work his way out of it." Hurdle said he hopes the move makes both pitchers better as the season goes along. "Hopefully, this is a thing that can light a fuse for [Corpas] and refocus and rekindle Huston," Hurdle said. "They're both focused and competitive men."
Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.