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Saturday Morning Rockpile:

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Clint Hurdle really needs to go into politics after he's done with managing. Not only is he a great person with enough public service cred to make it happen, but check out how he parses things.

On Scott Podsednik and Marcus Giles:

"They've both done things they need to do to play in the major leagues."

But notice, as Jack Etkin points out in the article, that Hurdle never says that they've done the things they need to do to play with the Rockies in April.

Here's another, Franklin Morales:

"He didn't make the club after his last start," Hurdle said. "He didn't not make the club after this start."

What we're consistently meant to be left with from this double speak is the impression that personnel decisions are still totally up in the air at this point, just two weeks before the team starts playing for real. That somehow players' performance in these next two weeks will determine their fate for this season. That's two, maybe three starts for pitchers, just a little over two games each for each of the nominal second base candidates. Unfortunately, for the thinking fan, that would therefore also have to leave us with the idea that the people who run this team are incredibly stupid and prone to rash courses of action.

Frankly, I don't buy it. Do they make dumb decisions sometimes? Sure, we all do, but what we're talking about would entail the intellectual incapacity to see a larger picture. I think there's some tendency to get panicky by Rockies management and the front office certainly, but the Spring -when nothing's at stake for the team- isn't when that tendency would manifest itself. In fact, Hurdle's further comments on Morales show that the long picture is very much more important to them than the short view one start brings:

"Did you watch the way he pitched last year? Did he ever pitch bad last year, with the exception of the World Series? He has work to do. That's as simple as you can put it. That's about as black and white as it can be. He just has work to do."

Right now, the reason the team is keeping what decisions it has made -or at least leaning heavily toward- close to the vest is merely posturing for leverage as they try to work out deals to move those that would otherwise figure to be on the final cut list. Is everything finalized? Certainly not, if a good deal for a borderline guy who figures to be on the team materializes, another that figured to be left off would move in to take his place. If somebody gets injured, the team will be able to keep a player it might not otherwise have.

I think the point stands that if the Rockies had to make the decision on their final roster today, they would know who they wanted and would be able to do that. If two weeks from now, the only change in circumstance is a few more Cactus League performances, I highly doubt the list changes. It's just a matter of trying to figure out who's on it.

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Apparently the key to incredible late season streaks in pro sports right now is to have the letters "rock" in your team name. If only the Cleveland Rockers still played in the WNBA, they too might have enjoyed some of the glory.