Rockies RHP Jimenez confirms trade to Cleveland

By The Associated Press

CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Indians have gone from a recent history of selling star pitchers to buyers, acquiring Ubaldo Jimenez from the Colorado Rockies to help them make a push for the playoffs.

The trade is contingent on the 2010 All-Star passing a physical.

Cleveland is sending to the Rockies right-handers Alex White and Joe Gardner and first baseman-outfielder Matt McBride, all minor leaguers, along with a player to be named.

Left-hander Drew Pomeranz, considered one of Cleveland’s top two pitching prospects, was pulled from his start at Double-A Akron. He did not sign with Cleveland after being drafted last year until the signing deadline of Aug. 16. No drafted player can be dealt until one calendar year after signing. Pomeranz was a standout at Ole Miss.

The Indians traded Cy Young winners CC Sabathia in 2008 and Cliff Lee in 2009.

Jimenez confirmed he was traded to the Cleveland Indians — shortly after he pitched one inning for Colorado at San Diego on Saturday night.

Jimenez said he was surprised. “Everybody knew it, even me,” he said outside the visitors clubhouse after his outing.

Jimenez, who allowed four runs on two hits with four walks and two strikeouts, said he was surprised he even pitched in the game.

In a bizarre scene, Jimenez went to the mound to warm up after Troy Tulowitzki had hit a two-run homer in the top of the first. At the same time, Esmil Rogers began throwing in the Rockies’ bullpen.

Jimenez had a rough first inning and said it was tough to concentrate.

“When I got to the mound, I couldn’t even throw a strike because I didn’t have my mind on the game,” he said.

After the right-hander came off the mound, he was greeted with hugs, handshakes and pats on the back from his teammates and coaches in the dugout.

When Jimenez was asked about going to Cleveland, he said: “That’s the fun part about being traded to a team like that because right now they’re in a good position. They’re fighting for first place.”