Dodgers reportedly acquire Ramon Hernandez from Rockies for Aaron Harang

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE

Hernandez was designated for assignment by the Rockies on Mar. 29.

The Dodgers have reportedly acquired catcher Ramon Hernandez from the Rockies for Aaron Harang and cash considerations, per Troy Renck of the Denver Post. and Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.

Renck says the Rockies are only getting salary relief in the deal, which likely means the Dodgers will assume the remainder of his $3.2 million salary this season. Hernandez was beaten out by Yorvit Torrealba for the Rockies' backup catcher job and was designated for assignment on Mar. 29.

Renck said "there could be other parts to this trade," which turned out to be Harang, who was stuck with no role in the Dodgers bullpen.

Harang made 31 starts for the Dodgers in 2012, his first year of at least 30 starts since 2007. He was 10-10 with a 3.61 ERA, with 131 strikeouts and 85 walks in 179⅔ innings. The walks were by far the most Harang has ever issued. Even though he had 10 intentional walks, his 75 unintentional bases on balls were 21 more than he had in any other season.

His 4.14 FIP equaled his career mark, but Harang's 4.95 xFIP for the Dodgers was his highest mark since his rookie year of 2002. In a weird twist, Harang allowed three baserunners for every two innings on the road, but allowed just three home runs in 17 road starts (he gave up 11 in 14 starts at home) and had a 3.40 road ERA.

Harang's pitched seven scoreless innings at Petco Park on May 17, but his highlight of the year was a different start against the Padres. On Apr. 13 at Dodger Stadium, in his second start of the season, Harang went an entire time through San Diego's lineup without a ball in play. After a leadoff single to Cameron Maybin, Harang struck out the next nine batters in a row, including eight swinging, and ended his night with 13 strikeouts to tie his career high.

The nine consecutive strikeouts broke the 50-year old franchise record of Johnny Podres, who struck out eight straight Phillies in the first year of Dodger Stadium. Harang came within one of tying Tom Seaver's major league record of 10 consecutive strikeouts.

Harang signed a two-year, $12 million deal before last year, and is due $7 million in 2013. Harang has a vesting option in 2014 worth between $7 million and $8 million, depending on innings pitched. If Harang doesn't pitch at least 175 innings in 2013, his option becomes a club option worth $7 million with a $2 million buyout.

One would assume this means Tim Federowicz, who won the backup catcher job in spring training, will be headed to Triple-A Albuquerque once Hernandez joins the Dodgers.

Hernandez, who turns 37 in May, hit .217/.247/.353 with five home runs in 52 games for the Rockies in 2012. This followed back-to-back 112 OPS+ seasons in Cincinnati for Hernandez, who signed a two-year, $6.4 million contract with Colorado prior to the 2012 campaign.

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