Last weekend the Rockies honored their 25th anniversary team, which was an exciting array of old Denver favorites, like Todd Helton, Larry Walker, and Ellis Burks. If only this was the team that could actually play for us. The Rockies have looked abysmal in the last month, and Jay Jaffe looks at the problems in the outfield. Charlie Blackmon, Carlos Gonzalez, and Gerardo Parra have not put together promising numbers. The rest of the defense has not produced in a big way, either, but the outfield is a place that the Rockies have struggled with consistently in recent history. This year they spent big on pitching, leaving the first base hole to be filled by Ian Desmond, which hasn’t been the best thing. Re-signing Carlos Gonzalez was an interesting move for the outfield. Overall, the Rockies have had a lot of issues this season, but maybe some changes in the outfield could help alleviate some of them.
There’s been a lot of frustration around Jon Gray this year. After having a phenomenal season last year, hopes were high for the starter. However, from the get go, he’s had a hard time getting it together. Fans and coaching staff have been frustrated about his performance, but no one is having a harder time with everything than Jon Gray himself. We see little bits and pieces of the wonderful Gray, the pitcher who can dominate on the mound. Then his control will slip, his pitches will elevate, and the hits will start happening.
Perhaps the Rockies should do with Gray what they’ve done with Bryan Shaw: send him to the DL to get things settled. Gray knows how important it is to the Rockies for him to do well, and the pressure has to be a lot. Gray has the potential to be an ace, but he needs to figure out how to maintain control.
When the 2018 season started, expectations for the Rockies were high. They’d built an awesome bullpen, Carlos Gonzalez came back, we’d just had a playoff appearance — times were good. The Rockies’ playoff chances started around 18 percent. Then things went wrong. And if the Rockies have any hopes of getting themselves back into the picture, something amazing needs to happen for them. It’s make or break time. No more of this dreadful bullpen, or a losing home record. Each component on the team needs to be able to work together. We can’t have a phenomenal starting pitching performance wrecked by lack of offense or poor bullpen delivery. For the Rockies to have a chance, things have to start working like a well-oiled machine.