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Friday, August 10, 2012

MLB: Despite tough year, Rockies see better days ahead

Jim Tracy…making Old Bloody Chiclitz’s toy ideas seem absolutely sensible.

Still, there is a feeling at 20th and Blake that the team may be as close to contending as one with a 40-69 record can hope to be, even with a middle-of-the-pack payroll. The Rockies think they can compete, even though the Dodgers and Giants made significant Deadline moves.

“It’s the importance of your young guys on that bump matriculating and heading in the direction they need to go in,” Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. “It’s absolutely imperative. I say that because the thing that I continue to be very excited about is what we’ve been able to do offensively without significant offensive pieces.”

... However, the nature of many of the losses leaves a nagging feeling. The inability to throw strikes or work out of situations has been an ongoing story with the young starting staff. The fact pitcher after pitcher has struggled and seemed unprepared upon arriving in the Majors is a concern the club must fix. There also have been some defensive lapses, shaky at-bats and strange decisions on the bases.

“There’s definitely some instances where I get caught by surprise sometimes, when I go, ‘This guy doesn’t know that yet?’ when I think he should know it,” Tulowitzki said. “But the game speeds up on them or certain things happen. But right now is about as relaxed atmosphere as you are going to have because of our record. It should be easier for guys.

Repoz Posted: August 10, 2012 at 09:50 AM | 14 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: rockies

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   1. Tom Nawrocki Posted: August 10, 2012 at 10:53 AM (#4205197)
Yeah, as terrible as the team has been this year, it's not hard to see how they could be contenders by 2014. Tulo, CarGo and Dexter Fowler will still all be under 30, and Wilin Rosario and Josh Rutledge have already shown they can be productive major leaguers. They'll add Nolan Arenado and possibly David Dahl to the big club by then as well. And among Pomeranz, White, De La Rosa, Chacin, Friedrich and Nicasio, they ought to be able to scare up some semblance of a starting rotation.

The problem with this year's club isn't necessarily that they're so bad; when you're making the transition to the next generation of players, you've got to expect to have a season like this. The problem is that they've been so bad while relying on a new batch of old mediocrities like Ramon Hernandez and Marco Scutaro and Jamie Moyer and Michael Cuddyer.

   2. stanmvp48 Posted: August 10, 2012 at 11:05 AM (#4205218)
Could be. Interesting walk ratios for some of the young hitters. Rutledge 3 BB/98 PA. Rosario 14/250. Pacheco 12/303. Colvin 14/271. I always suspect that the league catches up with guys like that. Will be interesting to see how they develop. Rosario is, as everyone knows, a poor defensive catcher at this point.

   3. There are a lot of good people in alt-Shooty Posted: August 10, 2012 at 11:11 AM (#4205223)
The Rockies think they can compete, even though the Dodgers and Giants made significant Deadline moves.

WTF does this mean? What does it matter to the Rockies what the Dodgers and Giants do at this point? And why is the 'D' capitalized? What the hell is going on around here? EVERYTHING HAS GONE CRAZY!
   4. Yastrzemski in left. Posted: August 10, 2012 at 11:19 AM (#4205238)
Huge Tulo fan, wish he could stay on the field. But before we know it he'll be 32 and a DH for NY.
   5. TomH Posted: August 10, 2012 at 01:13 PM (#4205358)
.... yes, since Jeter will still be listed at shortstop. They might position him like a short fielder in softball, but he will be "SS" on the lineup card.
   6. Too Much Coffee Man Posted: August 10, 2012 at 02:12 PM (#4205408)
#1 and #2 speak to some of the reasons NOT to be optimistic. Adding and assigning key roles to Hernandez, Scutaro, Moyer, and Cuddyer in the off-season suggests that they really misjudged this team. For what it's worth, the logic seemed to be that they were a really good team LAST year, but had chemistry problems, so the goal was to pretty in "better clubhouse guys."

O'Dowd's always seemed at least somewhat sabermetric savvy, but as an organization they've never seen to value on base skills. Dexter Fowler has been seen as a huge liability even though he has been putting up a .350+ OBP for his career. I think over the years, their players' inability to walk contributes to the home/road splits. (This year, they are 1st in the NL in runs scored at home, 2nd from the bottom - by 1 - at home.) There is SO MUCH room in the outfield, and the balls travel so fast, that a low OBP batter can still reach base on balls in play. In a different environment, swinging away has a huge cost.

And, while O'Dowd's been reassigned, another reason NOT to be optimistic is that only 3 months ago, Dick Monfort called him the "best GM in baseball," "head and shoulders above anyone else" (http://www.milehighsports.com/?p=10989).

Anyhow, the main point is that even with some younger and prime age talent on the team, there is a lot reasons to be skeptical this team can even approach 80 wins consistently.
   7. just plain joe Posted: August 10, 2012 at 02:16 PM (#4205418)
But before we know it he'll be 32 and a DH for NY.


How many DH's are the Yankees allowed to field at any one time?

Coke shooter to TomH for somewhat addressing this in #5.
   8. stanmvp48 Posted: August 10, 2012 at 02:33 PM (#4205443)
One problem that I have mentioned before is that Atkins and Hawpe who were ok players went totally down the crapper at relatively young ages leaving gaps they haven't yet filled from the farm system. They chose to fill Hawpe's gap with Cuddyer who is slightly better but much more expensive and actually older.
   9. Tom Nawrocki Posted: August 10, 2012 at 02:37 PM (#4205447)
They chose to fill Hawpe's gap with Cuddyer who is slightly better but much more expensive and actually older.


Hawpe was replaced by Seth Smith, whom the organization was determined to unload over the winter. Smith is about as good as Cuddyer, but much younger and cheaper.
   10. stanmvp48 Posted: August 10, 2012 at 02:45 PM (#4205458)
I was counting Smith as part of Hawpe's gap. He really hasn't done much for Oakland in a mostly platoon role.
   11. Walt Davis Posted: August 10, 2012 at 07:07 PM (#4205769)
Not to hijack but can somebody fill me in on what Oakland's lineup(s) and roster are at the moment? It's impossible to tell from the b-r page given they've got 17 guys with at least 100 PA plus Kottaras and I don't know who else below that. The only guys who seem to have been everyday are Weeks and Reddick (who's been slumping a bit). I assume some guys are hurt, when are they due back?
   12. JJ1986 Posted: August 10, 2012 at 07:14 PM (#4205778)
I think it's Moss at 1B, Inge at 3B, Pennington at SS, Cespedes in LF, Crisp in CF and Smith at DH.
   13. Justin T drives a crooked hoss Posted: August 10, 2012 at 08:07 PM (#4205814)
Chris Carter's been playing mostly for a few weeks and launching some balls. When his bat finds it, it goes.
   14. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 10, 2012 at 08:10 PM (#4205817)
Does anyone know what kind of philosophy this new quasi-GM has?

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