Monday Rockpile: Justin Morneau needs help to join Tulo and Blackmon at the All Star Game

Justin Edmonds

The Rockies will be well represented in Minnesota at next week's All Star game, but perhaps the more exciting news is all the players scheduled to come back in the weeks following the mid summer classic.

Troy Tulowitzki and Charlie Blackmon are both headed for the All Star game next week and they discuss the honor in this video. For Tulo, the induction is no surprise as he's been the leading vote getter in all of the National League during this entire process. The 5.3 million votes Tulo received is proof that fans will pay attention to the Rockies when somebody plays at the level Tulo has been playing this season.

Blackmon will be making his first All Star team and he'll be doing so as a reserve. He's cooled off dramatically since April, but is still holding onto his lower strike out rate and improved walk rate compared to previous seasons, meaning that he likely has a stretch of baseball far better than what we've seen since May 1st ahead of him this season.

The Rockies could end up with three All Stars as Justin Morneau is included in the final fan vote. Click here to vote early and vote often. Morneau actually has a pretty good shot at this since the game will be played in Minnesota where he's spent the bulk of his career.

Then there's a guy having a breakout season who won't be going to Minnesota. Nick Groke chronicles Corey Dickerson's breakout season and bright future with the Rockies. It's funny how delayed the All Star voting reactions are when it comes to both fans and players. There's little doubt in my mind that Corey Dickerson is having a better season than Charlie Blackmon, but because Blackmon put up the bulk of his numbers early, he's still a little more well known nationally. Dickerson's day is coming however. Once he gets enough plate appearances to qualify for the major league leader boards, I'm guessing more people will start to realize what he's been doing.

Meanwhile, there are signs that we may see something that resembles the actual roster the front office intended to have on the field by the end of the month.

- Carlos Gonzalez will begin a rehab assignment tonight and could rejoin the team by Friday if all goes well.

- Brett Anderson is still on schedule to return right after the All Star Break.

- Jordan Lyles is scheduled to throw 45 pitches today.

- Eddie Butler is scheduled to throw a 45 pitched session on Tuesday.

- Tyler Chatwood is scheduled to begin throwing on Wednesday.

- Michael Cuddyer has an MRI schedule for July 21st which will determine his fate for the final two months of this season.

By the first week of August, the Rockies rotation could include five of the following six pitches: Jorge De La Rosa, Brett Anderson, Jordan Lyles, Tyler Matzek, Eddie Butler, and Tyler Chatwood. In other words, we may have two months worth of season to fairly judge what the front office put together. If that rotation is in place with Tulo, Cargo, Arenado, and Dickerson on the field most nights, this team's record over the last 60 games may determine who in the front office still has a job come this winter.

Baseball Prospectus has released its top 50 mid season prospects. The Rockies are extremely well represented here with Jon Gray 11th, David Dahl 24th, and Raimel Tapia 35th.

Eric Garcia McKinley over at Rockies Zingers looks at what's gone wrong for the Rockies this season and tries to figure out how good they were to begin with this season. It's an interesting piece, but I'm not sure we can properly answer the question with the team getting next to nothing from Jhoulys Chacin, Brett Anderson, and Tyler Chatwood thanks to injuries. This is the most frustrating aspect of the season for me as it causes a serious impasse with any sort of front office debate. The question we need answered to determine if the front office is improving ("How good would a remotely healthy 2014 team look?") really cant be settled, making what seems to be everybody's favorite discussion these days a largely fruitless endeavor. The people who want the front office gone will say that the team wasn't very good to begin with and that there wasn't enough depth while the other side will say that the front office put together a team that would be north of .500 if it wasn't his by an atomic bomb of injuries. The debate can't advance until the injury bug goes away.

David Martin argues that the Rockies would be crazy to trade Jorge De La Rosa, and I agree with him. The lefty can pitch at Coors Field, and when he takes the mound there, the Rockies generally win. In fact, in the last 51 games started by Jorge De La Rosa at Coors Field dating back to the middle of 2009, the Rockies are 43-8.

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