Despite a 94 loss season, and the fifth consecutive year in which Rockies have lost at least 88 games, the club decided yesterday that the entire coaching staff will return for the 2016 season. Nick Groke has the story:
Rockies will retain entire coaching staff for 2016 under Walt Weiss - Nick Groke / Denver Post
Even though the Rockies offense ranks last in wRC+ and third to last in walk percentage, and the pitching staff ranks last in walks allowed and fourth to last in ERA- (a park adjusted version of ERA), hitting coach Blake Doyle, bench coach Tom Runnels, pitching coach Steve Foster, and bullpen coach Darren Holmes will all be back for another year along with manager Walt Weiss.
This announcement comes just ten month after Weiss acknowledged that there would likely be changes coming if the team didn't turn things around in 2015. Here's the quote from last December:
"We are at a point where we've got to turn it around. The reality of it is, if it doesn't happen this year, yeah, you're probably looking at going a different way at that point."
It's even crazier to think about this quote now when you consider that Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos was the aggressor in the Troy Tulowitzki trade. He's the one who called Jeff Bridich days before the deadline, he's the one who increased his offer last July, and he might be the only reason why this club's done anything significant in terms of changes since that quote was made. Think about how we would perceive what's going on at 20th and Blake right now if Anthopoulos didn't put the pedal to the medal, or if Reyes or Tulo went on the DL in mid July and the logistics of the trade were too tricky to pull off.
If the Rockies have determined that it's not the coaches fault the team lost at least 94 games for the third time in four seasons, then they better come to the conclusion that it's the players fault and ship several guys who have value right now out of town so they can make their next wave of prospects as strong as possible. If the nucleus of this roster hasn't been significantly altered by February, then I think it will be reasonable to conclude that there is zero accountability under this administration.
* * * * *
In other Rockies news, MLB.com recently released their latest list of Rockies prospects, which is nice because it gives us our first real look at a prospect list from a national source since the Tulo trade. Jeff Hoffman ranks fourth, Miguel Castro ranks tenth, and Jesus Tinoco lands eighteenth. That's pretty close to where most Purple Row commenters had these guys when it came up in discussions in August and September. Nice job folks.
As far as baseball that's occurring on the field right now, the playoffs need some sort of jolt today. After losses from the Blue Jays and Cubs yesterday, they've both been pushed to the brink of elimination, and if they both lose again today, we will have no baseball for almost a week when the World Series starts next Tuesday. Talk about air coming out of a balloon after the highly entertaining LDS series. If you want more baseball this week, you want the Blue Jays and Cubs to win today.
As far as chances for a comeback, one thing I mentioned in the comments last night and thought was pretty interesting is how the Blue Jays / Royals series is becoming an exact reverse mirror image of the 1985 ALCS. Take a look at this:
Game 1, 1985: Blue Jays win at home by five runs
Game 1, 2015: Royals win at home by five runs
Game 2, 1985: Blue Jays win at home scoring six runs in a game they once trailed 3-0
Game 2, 2015: Royals win at home scoring six runs in a game they once trailed 3-0
Game 3, 1985: Royals win as the bats wake up at home and they win their first game of the series
Game 3, 2015: Blue Jays win as the bats wake up at home and they win their first game of the series
Game 4, 1985: Blue Jays win on the road pushing the Royals to the brink of elimination
Game 4, 2015: Royals win on the road pushing the Blue Jays to the brink of elimination
Game 5, 1985: Royals win at home sending the series back to Toronto with an outstanding pitching performance from their No. 3 pitcher
Game 5, 2015: The Jays have their No. 3 pitcher starting at home today in a game they need a big performance.
I don't know how long this will continue, but the Royals won both games 6 and 7 on the road in 1985. So if this follows 1985 all the way to its conclusion, the Blue Jays will come back and win this series.
Troy Tulowitzki Provides a clue - August Fagerstrom / Fangraphs
August takes a look at Troy Tulowitzki's big three run home run to center field in game three of the ALCS and thinks it's a clue that the superstar player could return in a big way in 2016. The idea is that Tulo is at his best when he's able to hit home runs to all fields (not just pull shots), and hitting a ball that far, to that part of the field, in that spot in a big game may provide a clue that we'll be seeing more of that again next season.
Meet the war-torn glove Troy Tulowitzki just can't let go of - Kristina Rutherford / SportsNet
One thing that may not come back for Tulo next season is the glove he's been using. Meet the piece of leather that's responsible for more assists from shortstop than any other in Rockies history. Blue Jays club house manager Kevin Malloy only thinks it has a couple of weeks left, but Tulo didn't commit to saying that the glove won't be back in 2016.