The Rockies were able to clear a spot for Roy Oswalt and keep Jeff Francis. The veteran left-hander Francis agreed to accept a minor-league assignment, heading to Triple-A Colorado Springs as the Rockies insert Oswalt into the rotation Thursday at Washington.

Francis could have become a free agent given his big league service time. However, he surveyed the landscape and decided that the Sky Sox presented the best opportunity available. It speaks to his accurate self-evaluation.

Frnacis is struggling, there weren’t suitors and the Rockies know him. As a result, if an injury arises or someone slumps dramatically, Francis could return to the big leagues.