With the release of the ZiPS projections for the Rockies, which present a significantly rosier outlook on the team than the previously released Steamer numbers, FanGraphs’ Dave Cameron says the team could contend in 2017. Comparing the two sets of projections, Cameron notes that the main differences are in the outfield, specifically with David Dahl and Charlie Blackmon, and in the rotation, and if the Rockies perform closer to the new numbers, October baseball could be in their future.
Here are the aforementioned ZiPS numbers in detail. Dan Szyborski’s projections are particularly bullish on the Rockies’ rotation, not only liking all five starters projected to begin the season there, but also confident in the ability of German Marquez and Chris Rusin to fill in should the need arise. Also of note is that Raimel Tapia’s best comparison, according to ZiPS, is a young Gerardo Parra, who was pretty good.
At ESPN, Mark Simon and David Schoenfield have put a spotlight on players with unique skills in the field, including Nolan Arenado’s ability to make barehanded plays at third base. Simon and Schoenfield pick about Arenado’s signature play as something that might finally make him the player considered Brooks Robinson’s equal defensively at the hot corner, high praise indeed for the Rockies All-Star.