Predictions are fun, but they can also take a lot of time. The last few years I've put together a prediction list of milestones that Colorado Rockies players might achieve in the upcoming season. They have consisted of individual milestones (getting hit 1000) or Rockies specific milestones (DLR becoming the all-time strikeout leader). This year I'm going to keep it simple and stick with the Fanpost Friday Prompt and list 5 things I expect the Rockies, or the players, to do this year.
1) The Rockies will use 9 starting pitchers throughout the year. Last year they used 11 and I think a couple of those were just to see the younger kids pitch. This year they have the young kids going all year so injuries and ineffectiveness are the only thing standing in the way of 5 pitchers pitching all year.
2) On the starting pitching front: Jon Gray will strike out 200 batters for the first time in his career. He struck out 185 last year in only 168 innings so I see no reason he can't eclipse the 200K mark (unless this foot thing is actually a spine/lung/ACL issue). Not only would this be a first for Mr. Gray but it would be the first time since Jimenez in 2010 struck out 214 (221.2 innings), and only the third (!!) time in Rockies history (Pedro Astacio had 210 in 1999). Gray could very easily strike out more than both of those and become the Rockies single season strike out leader.
3) Let's get bold for a second (third?): The May 9 game against the Cubs will not only have a rain delay but will be rained out. I don't know why but we are looking for bold predictions and I don't think anyone else would go with something this maddening.
4) Trevor Story is a prolific hitter. He's also got a ton of speed. I, therefore, predict that in June Story will hit for the cycle. The Rockies only have 9 home games in the month and I don't think a Rockies player has ever hit for the cycle outside of Coors Field (lolCOORS). That being said Story can and will hit for the cycle in June, whether at Coors or any of the other large ball parks (Safeco, Chase, AT&T, Chavez Ravine, Petco, or PNC). I doubt he does it in Wrigley's tiny park but it's not out of the question.
5) And now back to Rockies related milestones (not really bold predictions): Nolan Arenado is on pace to become a legend in Colorado. This year he will enter the Rockies Top 10 (and beyond) in the following categories:
- Games Played (679 - Andres Galarraga; currently 561 and likely to pass Matt Holliday at 698 for 9th place)
- At Bats (2667 - Galarraga; currently 2342 and likely to pass Garrett Atkins at 2788 for 7th place)
- Runs Scored (394 - Atkins; currently 320 and likely to pass Neifi Perez !?!? at 395 for 9th place)
- Hits (769 - Perez !?!?; currently 613 and could pass Atkins at 805 for 9th place)
- Total Bases (1275 - Atkins; currently 1119 and could pass Holliday at 1466 for 8th place)
- Doubles (155 - Galarraga; currently 141 and likely to pass Brad Hawpe at 166 for 8th place)
- Home Runs (115 - Ellis Burks; currently 111 and likely to pass Holliday at 128 for 8th place)
- RBI (464 - Hawpe; currently 376)