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Colorado Rockies need to find a new Class-A Advanced affiliate

Rockies news and links for August 15, 2016.

Jen Mac Ramos

Cal League Shake Up Has Rockies Moving | Write 'em Cowboy

The Colorado Rockies and the Modesto Nuts will end their decade long relationship after this season. The Seattle Mariners have purchased a controlling stake in the Nuts, and starting in 2017 they'll be the new Class-A Advanced affiliate for the Mariners. It's not clear who will be the new affiliate for the Rockies. The California League is reducing from 10 to eight teams, and while six additional player development contracts in the California League expire after this season, it's not even a sure thing that the Rockies will remain in California. It's possible that the Rockies affiliate with a Carolina League team, which would make their advanced-A affiliate closer to Asheville and Hartford. A lot of PDCs expire after this season, so there will be a lot of movement from around the league.

Minor League Update: Games of August 12-14 | Baseball Prospectus

Christopher Crawford covers three Rockies prospects. First, there's Riley Pint, who threw five innings and allowed a run on three hits on Saturday. He walked four and struck out six. Thus far in the 18-year-olds very short professional career, command has been an issue. Then, there's Jordan Patterson. Regarding the possibility that Patterson might see major-league action soon, Crawford writes: "he deserves it." Purple Row will have more on Patterson later this morning.

Finally, he addresses Jeff Hoffman, who struck out nine batters in five innings yesterday while allowing just one hit and walking one batter: "A source close to Hoffman told me that he’s frustrated to still be in the minors. More results like this will make it difficult to keep him in the PCL." Hoffman is probably approaching his innings limit for the season, so he wouldn't be around for many starts. Still, it would probably be good for him and the Rockies to finish off 2016 with four to five major-league starts under his belt.

Saunders: Despite blown saves, Rockies’ Carlos Estevez has talent to be formidable closer – The Denver Post

Erstwhile Rockies' closer Carlos Estevez has had a poor run of baseball lately. Patrick Saunders, however, isn't worried about Estevez, who has displayed a high 90s fastball and a wipeout slider. His stuff was good enough to make him the closer in the first place. Walt Weiss isn't worried about Estevez either—neither are his teammates. I'm not worried either. Estevez is young, and with the right guidance, he'll make the adjustments to remain a high leverage reliever.

Rockies' Nolan Arenado struggling at plate |

Thomas Harding spoke with Nolan Arenado about his recent road-trip slump, which is made even more taxing because of the extreme heat the team has been playing in. Most revealing, however, is a quote from Walt Weiss. He told Harding: "Nolan fights himself, expects a lot of himself, and sometimes that's emotionally draining."

August might be the month when the season long grind catches up to players. The intensity with which Arenado plays might exacerbate the grind. He's been off in the field and poor at the plate. It's not as important this year, but how well Arenado handles the the grind next year might be an important factor for how well he and the team fares. By next year, let's hope that the pressure can be dispersed among many players.

Sunday Notes: Saber Seminar, Yelich, Shipley, Hooton, Aardsma, more | FanGraphs Baseball

David Laurila has a nugget of interest from current Red Sox President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski. In 1992, the Rockies selected Brad Ausmus in the expansion draft from the New York Yankees. Because the Rockies selected Ausmus, no other player from the Yankees could be chosen by another team. The Florida Marlins had the next selection, and had the Rockies not blocked another selection from the Yankees, Dombrowski, who was the Marlins' general manager at the time, would have chosen Mariano Rivera. He later would have played for the Marlins and would have been traded in a money dump at some point in his career. As a butterfly flaps its wings...