The Colorado Rockies are confusing. When writing about them -- or anything really -- it is easy to adopt a position to hold, defend that position, and rest on the fact that no matter how wrong you are, everybody else is probably just as wrong.
But I find myself so completely torn on how to feel about what we've just witnessed and what is to come that I'm starting to wonder if I am literally two people on the matter.
And in so realizing, it comes to me that a formative piece of fiction from my life may hold the key to finally being able to accurately describe how I feel about this team right now.
So yes, I am breaking Rule No. 1:
The concept of a roller-coaster does not even begin to describe the 2015 Rockies season as viewed though my own eyes. On a personal level, it will always have a special place in my heart. For the first time in my life, I went to work somewhere and felt like I belonged. Everyone from Cory and Warren up in the PR/Communications departments to Thomas Harding, Jenny Cavnar, Walt Weiss, and the entire clubhouse (with special thanks to Michael McKenry) made me feel -- in a way -- like a part of a team I've loved since I was six years old. Strapping on credentials and walking into Coors Field:
And I was still having fun despite the fact that I made a number of early bold predictions -- including possibilities that Kyle Kendrick and Daniel Descalso could be positive contributors -- to which my critics correctly responded:
It wouldn't be long before Kendrick and the rest of the pitching staff took the mound seemingly begging the other team:
We even had to replace the reigning batting champion with someone:
Benjamin. But close enough.
After some early success was replaced by some key injuries, terrible pitching, and long losing streaks, it became clear early on that 2015 would be another lost season:
But what did surprise me was when I somehow found myself in the middle of some inter-media fighting which had parties on all sides saying:
But then something way more surprising and important happened. Something that will define the 2015 for Rockies fans forever:
Tulo, Ed. Not Tyler.
A neutral observer could easily look to our fan-base's reaction to the Troy Tulowitzki trade -- up and down the spectrum -- and think:
People who had longed for change -- before the particulars of the trade were even in -- were already like:
Around these parts, Matt Gross and I in particular responded more along the lines of:
It just didn't seem real at first. Troy Tulowitzki could have become the greatest Colorado Rockie who ever lived, and now he won't:
The rebuild that some have been clamoring for had begun:
Hooray! We've felt like we've been at the bottom for half a decade. How many more steps can there be?
There should almost certainly be one more step toward the bottom in the trading of Carlos Gonzalez which is the only thing that makes business sense but still hurts as someone who roots for the success of both parties involved. And the Rockies face a similar question with Nolan Arenado if he won't -- and he most likely won't -- re-sign here. It's a no-win situation on both accounts and the team is likely going to have to get worse before it gets better:
But that isn't to say that everything is bad. The Rockies received real talent in the trade, worthy of being excited over. Defenders of the move were well equipped when they argued:
With regards to Tulo's contract:
Rockies fans haven't had a fulfilling breakfast in some time and many would argue it was because they were unwilling to break some eggs. Well, Jeff Bridich put on hist stomping boot an went to work.
Defenders of the trade and the new direction were making a lot of sense:
The last five seasons have been dreadful. Injured star-level hitters and a pitching staff that couldn't get things done defined the team in 2015 just like they did in 2014 ... and 2013 ... and 2012:
And 2016 doesn't hope to offer anything different. Attempts to explain what has or is happening begin to fall on deaf ears after all this losing. Rockies fans are tired or hearing it:
We are still in the egg breaking stage -- and this off season should see a few more including Carlos Gonzalez find their way into the frying pan -- meaning that we won't be ready to start cooking up the omelette until 2017 at the earliest. With nothing on the table until then, I expect attendance to suffer at Coors Field next season, some may even swear off the team entirely. We are Rockies fans:
Watching this team be all like:
We can lie to ourselves all we want and say to the team that does this to us year after year:
But we are sports fans -- particularly of the Colorado Rockies' variety:
We choose this obsession.
And now Rockies fans have nothing left to do but stick together and watch what happens: