ST. LOUIS -- Unconvinced that Mitchell Boggs would be able to resurrect his career in St. Louis, Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak spent the past three to four weeks testing the trade market to determine if the right-hander could be a fit elsewhere. On Tuesday, Mozeliak found a match.
The Rockies gave the Cardinals $206,400 from their pool of international signing bonus money in exchange for Boggs, whom the Cardinals sent to the Minors for the second time this season in early June. Mozeliak said the Rockies were unwilling to make a player-for-player trade and that the overall market for Boggs was dry.
The international money increases the Cardinals' pool to $2.267 million. The international market opened on July 2, and the money can be used to sign international players until that date next year.
"For us," Mozeliak said, "we look at it as being able to pick up another prospect."
Boggs' descent in value was rapid, as the Cardinals avoided arbitration by signing Boggs to a one-year deal worth $1.475 million only six months ago. Boggs was coming off a successful first season as the Cardinals' set-up man, and the organization envisioned him continuing in that role.
Those plans changed in March, when closer Jason Motte went down with an elbow injury. Boggs was given the first chance to be the team's closer, but he struggled.
At the time of his first demotion, Boggs had allowed 17 hits, walked 12 and given up 15 earned runs in 10 2/3 innings. A stint in Triple-A did not facilitate a turnaround. Upon returning, Boggs gave up runs in three of four appearances.
"My thinking with Mitchell was it was going to be hard to get him back here, so we had to do something," Mozeliak said. "No ill will toward him. Hopefully he gets himself back on track and productive in the big leagues."
The Rockies, who assigned the 29-year-old right-hander to their Double-A affiliate, will be Boggs' second organization. He was drafted and signed by the Cardinals in 2005, made his debut in '08 and helped the '11 team to a World Series title. In his six seasons with St. Louis, Boggs posted a 4.15 ERA.
"I think the exact word he used was 'disappointed,' because as I stated, I think he had higher expectations going into the season," Mozeliak said, relaying details of his conversation with the reliever. "And for it to end like this, I think it disappointed him. He said a lot of great things about this organization and the people in it, and I think he's going to miss that."
Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.