Using the first base question as a point of departure, Rox Pile's Isaac Marks considers whether Corey Dickerson or Ryan McMahon would fit best at first base after 2016. Whoever it is, that person will be tasked with making first base a site of production for the Rockies again.
Since Todd Helton's last quality season in 2011, Rockies first baseman (Helton's final two seasons included) have amassed -0.5 fWAR. That might not seem bad, but consider that the team posted 4.3 fWAR at the position in 2014. The position has been a black hole three out of the last four years, and it looks like it will be again in 2016, so a solution is needed.
There are two interesting tidbits in David Laurila's Sunday Notes column this week. First, he addresses the rapid decline of former Rockies catcher and first baseman Wilin Rosario, who is in the midst of transitioning to the Korean Baseball Organization. Regarding Rosario's well known defensive flaws, Laurila indicates that "it wasn't for a lack of raw talent." He drew that conclusion from an anonymous source:
"From a tool-set standpoint, he was tremendously athletic," said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity. "He could throw, he was strong, he had mobility. He had everything you need to be an upper-echelon catcher in the big leagues. In all likelihood, he didn’t work hard enough at his craft."
Additionally, Laurila provides some outfielder news. Given all the discussion of free agent dominoes falling, which might mean that one of the Rockies three incumbent outfielders will be traded, it's easy to forget that there might be other outfielders on the trade market. The Dodgers have incentive to trade Andre Ethier before April 21. After that date, Ethier will have 10-5 rights, which means that he will be able to veto any trade in which he's involved.
Like Carlos González, Ethier will be making a lot of money over the next two years. He'll be paid $35.5 million, compared to the $37 million González will get. Also like CarGo, Ethier had a big 2015. His .294/.366/.486 batting line was 37 percent above league average after park adjustments. The Rockies aren't the only team with an outfielder to trade.
Right-handed starting pitcher Shane Carle is among the Rockies' non-roster invitees to training camp, though the full list of NRI's has not yet been announced. The Rockies acquired Shane Carle in November 2014 from the Pirates in exchange for reliever Rob Scahill. In 2015, Carle started 26 games for Double-A New Britain. In 160⅓ innings, Carle posted a 3.48 ERA. He only struck out 5.6 batters per nine innings, but he also exhibited excellent command by only walking 1.7 per nine. Carle represents rotation depth, and he has a very good chance of making his major league debut sometime in 2016.
We're a little late on this one, as the bracket has been trimmed to just four names, but it's not too late to vote for in this baseball-name tournament. The final match-ups have Ten Million facing Shadrack McHooveter and Pretzels Getzien battling it out with Orlando Zgraggen. I'm pulling for McHooveter while lamenting the losses suffered by personal favorites Lil Stoner and Agamemnon Baca.