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Despite an uphill battle, the Rockies are still focused on winning a division title

Rockies news and links for Sunday, September 23, 2018

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‘We’re not thinking about the wild-card’: With Gerardo Parra providing spark, Rockies are holding out hope | The Athletic ($)

After the most disappointing series of the season, which saw the Rockies fall out of first place in the NL West at the hands of their divisional foes from Los Angeles, Bud Black passed along important advice to his reeling club: “find peace in the past, then wrestle with the fates.” According to Nick Groke, that advice sparked a change in his players mindsets and prepared them to battle not just for a playoff berth, but for a chance at the division title.

They will need some help, but the NL West can still be won, and the Rockies keep believing and battling until the end. Gerardo Parra brought that spirit with him to the plate in the 8th inning on Friday night when he started a four-run inning with a pinch-hit base hit. Parra is hitting .375 in pinch-hit duties this season and doing his part to keep their Postseason hopes alive. How’s he doing it? According to Parra, he’s just telling himself to “be happy,” and do his best—advice we can all take to heart in difficult times.

Story doing baseball work, but no date for return |

In case you missed it, Thomas Harding has the latest update on Trevor Story’s rehab and quest to rejoin the Rockies this year and continue his MVP-caliber season. The good news is Trevor is playing catch and taking batting practice again, as seen in Harding’s tweet below:

Looks pretty good, and the ball sounds great off his bat. It’s great news, for sure, but the downside is there is still no timetable for his return. Bud Black does mention in the article it will be “in these next 10 games,” but there are only eight games left, so that time frame is a little misleading. Regardless, it’s important the Rockies don’t push it with Story. Having a healthy Trevor in 2019—still in the team’s championship window—is just as important, if not more so, than a few more games this year.

MLB must fix its September call-up problem | Denver Post Sports

Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post has a bone to pick with Major League Baseball, and no, it isn’t painfully pun-worthy. Patrick makes some very good points about September call-ups, expanding rosters to upwards of 40 players, and its ability to change the game at the most meaningful time of the year.

Whether that change is negative or positive is still up for debate, but even Bud Black agrees with him and would like to see the rule changed. What about you, Purple Row readers? Would you like to see MLB do the “smart thing” and reduce roster sizes in September?

30 best games of ‘18 -- 1 player from each team |

Richard Justice from took the time to highlight thirty of the very best individual performances in baseball this year, one from each team. These range from amazing performances over the entirety of a specific game—like Mookie Betts’ four-hit, five-run, two-doubles-and-a-grand-slam outing back in April—to exact moments that define a season, such as the performance that caught his attention from the Rockies.

On June 28th, at AT&T Park in San Francisco, DJ LeMahieu hit a two-run go-ahead home run that won the game for the Rockies, pulled them out of 4th place at the time, and set the tone for the club that won 44 of their next 69 games and brought them squarely back into the mix to battle for their first division title.

It was an epic turnaround and the spark this team needed to remain relevant and in the Postseason picture to this day. If the Rockies end up winning the NL West or making the playoffs at all, we can look back at this moment as one of the biggest reasons why.