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It's the last day of a long, terrible Colorado Rockies season. Let's eulogize this year so that we can move on.
It's the last day of a long, terrible Colorado Rockies season. Depending on the outcome of today's game, Colorado will end up with either 98 or 99 losses, a franchise low. The good news, of course, is that once this game finishes tonight, we can officially put this season to bed and look forward to a new, better year. But first, let's quickly eulogize this year so that we can move on.
Their starting pitchers will have combined for an ERA somewhere around 5.85 and will have thrown the fewest innings in the majors by 115. The Rockies have had 14 pitchers make starts this year, with each making at least 2 starts. None of those starters had an ERA lower than 4.43 in those games.
It's no wonder therefore that the two most common runs allowed outcomes for Colorado this year were 7 and 6 runs. In other words, opposing fans got tacos an astounding 61 times this year (compared to just 39 times for the Rockies).
The hitting was pretty normal -- namely, Colorado was their usual slugging self at home (.306/.367/.500 line) and awful on the road (.240/.291/.372). Yes, Colorado as a team has a .663 OPS on the road this year. Even so, Colorado was pretty bad both at home (35-46) and on the road (28-52 so far).
Many key contributors were hurt for long periods. Troy Tulowitzki, Jhoulys Chacin, and Jorge De La Rosa were all expected to be important pieces of a contending team. Instead, they mostly sat 2012 out.
It wasn't all bad. Wilin Rosario laid waste to NL pitching (unfortunately, his defense did the same to Rockies pitching). Josh Rutledge looked like a big league regular at 2nd base going forward. Both Jordan Pacheco and Chris Nelson hit over .300 for the year. Jhoulys Chacin has been great since returning from injury. The bullpen took an impossible situation they were given by the starters and made it palatable at times. Even in a terrible season we can find those rays of sunshine -- and hope that they stay sunny next year.
Okay, I think that's enough of that. If you expand the focus outside of the Rocky Mountain region, there are still a couple of games with postseason implications happening today, particularly in Oakland tonight. Pick a side and root, root, root for an exciting postseason.
Grantland's Jonah Keri posted part 2 of his interview with Rockies GM Bill Geivett on Monday. The major topics of conversation were the 4 man rotation, ground ball pitchers, and acquiring pitching talent. He also threw some water on the Tulo to 3rd base fire. This is a must-read for a multitude of reasons, as it provides plenty of insight into the front office's mindset.
Troy Tulowitzki talks about getting ready for 2013 in this Troy Renck article. If the Rockies are going to turn it around next year, he'll be a crucial part of it.
Renck also notes that ticket prices are going to be static in 2013. Whatever you have to say about the Monforts, they do make it affordable (ranked 29th in ticket prices) to attend a ballgame at a beautiful park.
Thomas Harding writes about the 2012 season of Jordan Pacheco. I for one have been guilty of ignoring Pacheco's contributions given the fact that his poor defense renders him a below replacement level player in both fWAR and rWAR. Still, a .306/.338/.418 line from a rookie who wasn't expected to produce much was definitely something that went right for the Rockies this year.
This blurb at SI.com notes that Colorado is expected to gut their coaching staff. I remain unconvinced that there will be too many changes besides maybe a token dismissal of a Richie Dauer-type coach.