BSN has all the details from yesterday’s announcement that the Rockies have signed former Kansas City Royals closer Greg Holland. BSN points out that the Rockies are taking a diversified approach to improving their bullpen, rather than dropping big money on one big reliever like the Yankees, Giants, and Dodgers did. While it does help that the team didn’t drop the big bucks on a reliever, which is always a risky investment, spreading the money between multiple relievers just means they’ve spread their risk, rather than eliminating it. The variance of possible outcomes for Holland and left-handed reliever Mike Dunn is quite wide and could end up hurting the Rockies.
By all accounts, Holland was one of the best relievers in the league between 2011 and 2015 before undergoing Tommy John Surgery in August of 2015, and there may be legitimate reason to not consider his merely above average performance in 2015 (110 ERA+ in 44 2⁄3 innings). Between 2011 and 2014 Holland had a 1.86 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 12.9 K/9, and 3.2 BB/9 in 256 1⁄3 innings. That all adds up to a 220 ERA+. Make no mistake, if Greg Holland returns to even 80% of what he was before his surgery, this deal will be a steal for the Rockies.
Mark Townsend thinks that the deal may, in fact, be the push the Rockies need in order to be considered contenders. Of course, the time between his last pitch in the majors and his next one will be 18 months, so this isn’t exactly a surefire solution.
David Schoenfield breaks down yesterday’s deal. He sees the signing as a helpful upgrade to what was a dismal bullpen, but it seems that Holland is the one taking the risk by coming to pitch at Coors Field. In any case, Schoenfield’s concerns with the “Rockies as contenders” theory lies elsewhere.
Kevin Henry caught up with Chad Bettis during the Rockies Caravan stop in Golden on Tuesday. In the long and refreshingly candid interview, Bettis talks about the support he’s received since he went public with his cancer diagnosis and what he’s looking forward to this season.
Kevin also also got to chat with Tony Wolters about what it’s going to take for the Rockies catcher to improve in his sophomore season, and about DJ LeMahieu’s response to his winning the batting title last season.
When it comes to upgrading the bullpen, it seems that the Rockies are willing to look at a lot of different ways to improve. Patrick Saunders reported yesterday from the Rockies caravan that the team is still considering throwing young guns like Hoffman and Kyle Freeland into the mix in the bullpen. If this is used as a sort of David Price/Adam Wainwright/Chris Carpenter development path, I’m all for it.
Here’s another season preview for the Rockies from a national outlet. At this point, if you’ve read one of them you’ve read them all. To be fair, these sorts of previews are written for fans of other teams who want to get reacquainted with what happened in the offseason while they were watching football. Oh, and though this was published before the news of the Holland signing broke, I doubt it would change the analysis all that much.