After his first Cactus League start following a scare with testicular cancer in the offseason, Rockies starter Chad Bettis told Patrick Saunders that he wants to have more fun with baseball this season and also thinks he can bring more velocity to the mound in 2017.
Another Rockie working back to the mound is reliever Greg Holland, who had Tommy John surgery in late 2015. Holland threw a simulated game yesterday with his fastball clocking in at 91-92 MPH, a couple ticks down from the 95.8 he averaged in 2014. Holland told Thomas Harding he isn’t concerned, though, citing the early stage of Spring Training and lack of game intensity.
The Rockies finally got a diagnosis on outfielder David Dahl’s back injury, which revealed a stress reaction in a rib. Dahl will be re-evaluated in two weeks, and Rockies manager Bud Black said he hopes to have Dahl back by the end of Spring Training.
Utility infielder Pat Valaika led the Rockies’ home run barrage in a 10-9 win over the Dodgers on Monday. Valaika hit a pair of homers and Gerardo Parra, Dustin Garneau and Anthony Benboom each had a long ball of their own in the win. Tyler Chatwood got the start on the mound for the Rockies, allowing a run in three innings of work.
In Steven Martano’s NL West preview, he cites in-division performance as a key to the Rockies’ success in 2017. If they can take advantage of their 38 total games against the Padres and Diamondbacks and remain competitive with the Giants and Dodgers, Martano says a playoff berth is within reach.