Right-hander Ramon Ramirez was acquired by the Kansas City Royals from the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday for a player to be named.
Kansas City also designated left-hander Jorge De La Rosa for assignment to clear room on the 40-man roster.
The 26-year-old Ramirez, once one of the top prospects in Colorado's system, set team rookie reliever records with a 3.46 ERA and 61 strikeouts in 61 appearances in 2006. He opened his career in the majors with 15 1-3 consecutive scoreless innings and finished his rookie year 4-3.
But Ramirez struggled with an elbow injury last season, going 2-2 with an 8.31 ERA in 22 games for Colorado. He was 4-0 with a 2.28 ERA in 25 appearances for Triple-A Colorado Springs.
De La Rosa was a candidate to fill one of the final two spots in Kansas City's rotation, but had a spring ERA of 8.03 and allowed four runs in four innings his last outing.