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Ryan McMahon rode the major league roller coaster in 2018

McMahon’s season happened about a month at a time, splitting time between Albuquerque and Denver

You’re reading the 2018 edition of Ranking the Rockies, where we take a look back at the season had by every player to play for the Rockies in 2018. The purpose of this list is to provide a snapshot of the player in context. The “Ranking” is an organizing principle that’s drawn from Baseball Reference’s WAR (rWAR). It’s not something the staff debated. We’ll begin with the player with the least amount of rWAR and end up with the player with the most.

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No. 24, Ryan McMahon (0.1 rWAR)

Ryan McMahon‘s season happened about a month at a time, particularly in the first half — April in the majors, May in the minors, June in the majors, and July in the minors before finally being recalled for a final time on July 29 to finish out the season in the big leagues. He started off by making his first Opening Day roster after lighting it up in spring training, hitting .319/.365/.522. However, once on the roster, his role was very limited and he didn’t do much when he did play. McMahon hit only .180/.317/.200 in 60 plate appearances before ultimately being optioned back to Triple-A on the first day of May.

June proved to be much better, when he hit .244/.239/.489 — almost double what he did in April. The night before he was optioned, he even hit the go ahead three-run home run that sealed a Rockies victory:

Immediately after, he was optioned to Triple-A again to work on his new swing that he had been working on. McMahon’s final call up came on July 29, during which he made 96 plate appearances to finish out 2018 and hit .256/.333/.419 with eight extra base hits (three home runs and five doubles). Throughout it all, strikeouts remained an issue for McMahon, but the “inconsistent playing time” caveat applies. In 2018 as a whole, he struck out 31.7% of the time.

Ryan McMahon had a roller coaster year that happened about a month at a time. He started off shaky, but by the end he was showing more and more of why he’s been a touted hitting prospect in the Rockies system. If there’s a roster spot available for him next year, he should be able to slide in and hopefully make the transition into a full-time major league hitter.