Though it seems like Colorado's playoff chances were gone sometime in early June, it was only yesterday that the Rockies were officially eliminated from playoff contention. That means the Rockies are absent from the playoffs for the fifth year in a row.
If owner Dick Monfort's belief still holds that the goal should be for a team to make the playoffs two out of every five years, then the Rockies have failed pretty miserably. After all in that time frame, only in 2010 did Colorado even stay in the playoff race past the trade deadline. The worst part of all this is that Colorado seems in my mind, despite possessing quite a bit of young talent, to be pretty far from contending seriously next year or the year beyond that.
Christian Bergman played the part of a crafty righty well yesterday, allowing two runs on sixt hits in his six innings of work with no strikeouts and one walk. Bergman has maximized his ability by relying on good command and has ridden that all the way to becoming an above replacement level starter this year. Still, the Rockies lost because they were unable to muster even one measly run on their five hits. Last night's loss drops Colorado's road record this year to an abysmal 20-51 (the Rockies are 39-35 at home).
There's enough road futility stats to fill an entire article (foreshadowing for next week!), but I'll just leave you with two. First, the Rockies are hitting .228/.278/.379 on the year - that's good for a 76 wRC+, 24% below league average. Compare that to Colorado's home splits, which are bonkers in a good way: .318/.369/.521, 114 wRC+. Secondly, that punchless offense has generated just 3.2 runs per game, compared to 5.9 at home. Yeesh.
Josh Rutledge hasn't been good this year by either WAR (-0.7 rWAR, -0.6 fWAR) and indeed was the worst hitter in MLB in the month of August by a long shot. Rutledge hit .159/.202/.205 in 96 PAs, which gave him an astoundingly bad -5 wRC+, 30 points worse than the next worst player. So of course Rutledge has been the seventh best player in September with a .500/.560/.818 line (265 wRC+) in 27 PAs.
Either way, if Rutledge is to stick at the big league level much longer, he needs to harness his above average speed and decent power potential and become the kind of player who doesn't hurt you enough with the glove to be playable in a super-utility role.
Wilin Rosario went 1-4 with a double and game-ending groundout in his first start since coming off the DL a couple of days ago. Like Rutledge, Rosario has had something of a disaster season this year (-0.7 rWAR, -0.3 fWAR), but the effect has been magnified because of the higher expectations for the Baby Bull. With the emergence of Michael McKenry, it's entirely possible that Rosario is in his last month with the Rockies.
Nathaniel Stoltz writes about the jump in pitching quality from Rookie ball to Low A and from Low A to High A. It's a pretty good look at the talent hierarchy of minor league baseball and is good to keep in mind when you're drooling over Rookie ball stats.
This piece by Alex Remington is pretty neat. He takes three Hall of Famers that were born yesterday and three Hall of Famers that died yesterday and weaves a narrative about baseball's history.