As a recent trend shows, the Rockies do not perform well in even numbered years. We like to make the playoffs in odd-numbered years and unfortunately 2011 can't come soon enough. As Andrew Martin pointed out, many teams have had losing streaks and have contended and made the playoffs and gotten through them. But the recent road trip showed, we aren't a clutch team, we can't score runs, our pitching is inconsistent, and we don't look like a ball club that wants to make the playoffs let alone contend for a World Series. Our lineup is good but it does not strike fear into an opposing team. While Carlos Gonzalez is having a career year and will be a great player in my opinion, he still lacks plate discipline. The Return of the man named Troy will provide some girth to our lineup, but even before he was hurt the lineup didn't strike a lot of fear into a pitcher. Yes with a good Ubbaldo on the mound, we are much more likely to be able to win a playoff series but without a consistent number two starter it is still somewhat unlikely given our ability to hit the ball. With all the culmination of these things, Todd Helton's decline, our shuffling lineup, the Chinese fire drill they call our bullpen, and not wanting to spend big money at the deadline to improve our team...I think its time to sell. By sell, I mean sell wisely, not just fire up the chainsaw and chop down the forest, but rather take out the clippers and prune the bonsai tree.We can load up on prospects at the deadline and maybe use them to make a splash in the off-season or next season.
Pruning the bonsai tree
Brad Hawpe- Has lost it ever since the All-Star Break last year. Possibly a change of scenery could help him and we have Seth Smith who has proved he can play at an everyday MLB level. Rumor has it the White Sox are keeping him in mind as a plan B or plan C.
Jorge De La Rosa- Yes he was awesome, but since his injury has been inconsistent. He could be very valuable to a contending team. We can wait and see what he does tonight, and if he is great maybe we want to keep him, or increase his trade value to a contending team. Could gain us a prospect or two and could be a free agent at years end and is classified as a Type B.
Aaron Cook - Not sure if I want to part with him, but on the books for next year at $9.25 million. Could be valuable trade for a contending team as well.
Jason Giambi- Love the guy but if we can get anything for him and send him to a contender lets do it.
Rafael Betancourt and Joe Beimel- In an extremely weak reliever market we could get a team or two to overpay for these guys. These guys are crucial to our bullpen so this would be a big decision. We could get a decent amount in return especially if we lower our asking price vs what the Toronto Blue Jays are asking for their relievers.
Melvin Mora- Valuable utility player and I think we could part with him if we get something in return.
This is a lot of pruning, but these are pruning options as the deadline approaches these are moves that could help our team long term. Obviously there is no better feeling than Rocktober and want that feeling more than anything again this year. I think even with these moves made we could still contend for the Wild Card spot. Although we could prune these leaves off of the busy, we could still acquire a Jorge Cantu or look to package the prospects we get to make a bigger splash. As fall approaches and the deadline to make a move or not comes, I think the Rockies can prune their bonsai tree and benefit the future of the ball club tremendously.