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The Rockies' soft homestand is a mirage

Rockies news and links for July 18, 2016.

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado Rockies: Critical Seven-Game Homestand Ahead | Rox Pile

Kevin Henry provides a preview of the Rockies' upcoming seven game homestand against the Rays and Braves. It seems like a gift, as they are two of the worst teams in baseball.

A bit too much has been made about the homestand. If the Rockies manage to sweep the entire thing, which won't be easy because winning seven straight baseball games is not easy, they'd climb back to an even .500. Even a full sweep wouldn't do that much for the Rockies playoff odds, which are about one percent at the moment. None of those wins, obviously, would be coming against teams ahead of them in the postseason race.

Not only that, but this homestand will be followed by a seven game road trip as difficult as the home stretch is easy: three against the Orioles and four against the Mets. It will be nice to see what the Rockies can do against a couple of the weaker teams in baseball, but even the best case scenario against them isn't going to change the view of the season.

Saunders: Next 16 games will determine Rockies’ path – The Denver Post

Patrick Saunders states that the Rockies feel a sense of urgency with their upcoming stretch of games. Counting the weekend games and the upcoming homestand, he suggests that the Rockies need to go 7-2 in the nine games to avoid falling into possible seller mode. After the 1-1 weekend showing, that means a 6-1 homestand. Even if the Rockies accomplish that, they would still have an extremely slim chance at contending this season.

In other words, if the question of buying or selling (or something in between) at the trade deadline relied entirely on record and potential to contend this season, the question is already answered.

Rockies' Boone Logan has value to bullpen |

Thomas Harding revisits Boone Logan's end to the 2015 season. He notes that Logan's excellent finish was important for how well he's pitched in 2016. Even though the Rockies were well out of the race, there was significant baseball being played.

Sunday Notes: Pitching Profar and Choo, Reds’ Stephenson, more | FanGraphs Baseball

David Laurila of FanGraphs states that Rockies' hitting coach Blake Doyle has been important in DJ LeMahieu's emergence as a legitimate offensive threat in 2016. Laurila notes that Doyle has "helped him simplify both his mechanics and his approach," which involved limiting LeMahieu's leg kick. Regarding Doyle's overall hitting philosophy, Doyle told Laurila that "balance, rhythm, and timing" are more important than the "swing." "When guys get to this level," Doyle continued, "they can swing a bat. When things go wrong, 95% of the time something got worse from the waist down. It’s never in the swing. . . .Being balanced, having rhythm, starting on time and being on time, are the keys to hitting.”