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Rockies choosing chemistry over production

Rockies news and links for May 19, 2018

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Colorado Rockies: Are they picking chemistry over offense? | Rox Pile
It has become difficult to argue against the notion that the Colorado Rockies are valuing clubhouse chemistry over offensive production. As Spring Training began, third baseman Nolan Arenado and other members of the Rockies’ roster were very vocal about bringing outfielder Carlos Gonzalez back to the team after a disappointing 2017 campaign. Shortly after Arenado stated that a CarGo reunion would be “the greatest thing ever,” the veteran was re-signed to a one-year, $8 million contract.

Unfortunately, Gonzalez has been struggling to an even greater extent in 2018 than the previous year. Despite coming through with a clutch 2-run single in the top of the 12th inning against the San Francisco Giants on Thursday evening, CarGo is only hitting for a .218/.264/.386 slash through his first 110 plate appearances. Gerardo Parra is also struggling, but both he and Gonzalez are being given most of the outfield starts over 24-year-old David Dahl, one of the better hitters on the team. Had CarGo not re-signed, Dahl would likely have been given a greater opportunity to accrue additional plate appearances. Despite the struggles of the veterans, there is little to no indication that the better performing player will be given his fair chance any time soon.

At first base, Ian Desmond’s struggles have been well-documented. While Ryan McMahon struggled in 60 plate appearances in the Majors before a demotion to Triple-A Albuquerque, one can’t help but wonder what the prospect could deliver if given the reigns as an everyday first baseman at the MLB level.

Colorado Rockies: A potential trade with the Texas Rangers? | Rox Pile
Noah Yingling of Rox Pile unpacks a trade proposed on MLB Network recently, which involved the Rockies acquiring Joey Gallo from the Texas Rangers. In exchange, Mark DeRosa of MLB Central recommended that the Rockies send Ian Desmond and a prospect(s) in return. I would be all for this deal, but I don’t think the Rangers could be convinced, particularly given Gallo’s several years of remaining control.

Rockies Insider: Adam Ottavino, easily an all-star, making early case for greatest relieving season in club history | The Denver Post ($)
It’s early to get into All-Star talk, but Rockies reliever Adam Ottavino is making an excellent case. Not only that, Ottavino is making a case to have one of the best relief season in Rockies history. In 25 innings to begin 2018, Otto has compiled 44 strikeouts against 9 walks. His ERA is 1.08, which is largely backed up by a 1.46 FIP.

One year after conquering cancer, Chad Bettis is in full control of his pitching powers with the Rockies | The Athletic ($)
In a very well-written piece for The Athletic, Nick Groke details Chad Bettis’ strides in the year since he conquered cancer. Bettis has now turned into one of the steadiest members of the Rockies’ rotation. Bettis struggled in his first 55 cancer-free innings in 2017 to the tune of a 5.05 ERA, but refers to the “process” that has allowed him to take “a step back” in both his baseball career, and in his personal life.

History Colorado Center; home of Rockies, baseball history in a football-dominated town | Mile High Sports
If you have a chance to visit the History Colorado Center, it is recommended that you check out the “Play Ball!” exhibit. Not only do you get the opportunity to check out the history of Rockies baseball, but The Marshall Fogel Collection is also featured— “a collection that rivals the baseball hall of fame,” according to Mile High Sports.