Notes from Thursday reveal weakness in the Team USA strategy for the WBC, injury updates, a desire for the Rockies to be more even keeled both home and away and the tight bond forming between the Rockies catching corps.
I'm not sure how I should respond to yesterday's contest between the Rockies and Team USA, albeit my first reaction was something like, "Wow, sequestration cuts really must have gone deep if we're relying on Nick Schmidt, Jeff Manship and Mike McClendon to represent the best our country has to offer the world on the mound." Okay, kidding btw. No Politics.
At any rate, Troy Renck has a rundown of other notes from yesterday, including that the Yankees may look at Colorado's surplus of first base types if they want to find a short term replacement for Mark Teixeira. Also noted are injury updates on Troy Tulowitzki and Charlie Blackmon, as well as Jorge De La Rosa advising onlookers not to push the panic button yet on his unreadiness with the change-up and poor location of his fastball thus far this Spring. It's probably good advice as we're only a week into March. A couple of weeks from now if there's no improvement, then we might start pushing said panic button. Not that there's really much of our expectations left to torch after 2012, so maybe "panic" isn't the right term here. Let's call it the "Oh, you again, yes, just get on with it," button.
There's also an article by Renck about closing the gap between the Rockies road offense and the Rockies home offense, which even after park adjustment actually was an issue last season when compared to recent seasons. You'd have to go back to pre-humidor, 2002 to find a larger gap between the Rockies home and road performance in OPS+, for instance. Coors Field was obviously strange in a retro way for Rockies pitchers as well last season, but so far I haven't seen convincing evidence of a cause for this blip. As such, the theory that it's something the players themselves can rectify to some degree may make some sense. Because of a fairly substantial turnover of personnel over the last couple of years, the team gave a relatively high number of PA's to players unseasoned at Coors Field in 2012, around 60% to players in their first season at Colorado or rookie eligible, which might have something to do with it. I would think experience helps in an area like this.
Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario is the lone Dominican of the team's otherwise predominately Venezuelan backstop corps, but the other catchers are "adopting him as one more Venezuelan," according to Yorvit Torrealba. The camaraderie among the team's catchers is the focus of Rafael Rojas Cremonesi's article on the official site.