The answers Nick Groke offers are “the same” and “no, probably not.” He takes a look at the bullpen at the start and end of the 2019 season, as well as salary obligations for next season, and concludes that there won’t be a bullpen makeover.
We sort of already knew that. But Groke also has something new here, and it has to do with who will close games for the Rockies. In August, Davis was finally, mercifully, removed from the closer role in favor of Scott Oberg. But Bud Black, according to Groke, “went out of his way to avoid saying the change was permanent. And Davis may very well start 2020 as Colorado’s closer again.”
Honestly, I don’t put to much stock in who the closer is and focus more on getting the best pitchers in the game in the highest leverage situations. Ninth innings have a lot of high leverage situations though, and Davis should probably be a middle innings or mop up guy until he can prove that he’s rediscovered what once made him one of the best relievers in the game.
In this free story from DNVR, Drew Creasman talks to the developer for a new app called UmpScores. The app tracks balls and strikes for major league umpires, with a big emphasis on highlighting all of the calls that they get wrong. It can be seen as part of a larger argument in favor of roboumps. It’s something that exists in the hopes that it will soon be made irrelevant. That, at least, is the only reason I can think of for wanting to put every pitch under the microscope and placing it on the good or bad side of a ledger.
I may be in the minority, but I don’t want roboumps. I don’t think the current system for calling balls and strikes is broken, and I don’t think roboumps will improve the game. I also take a lesson from instant replay. I was a proponent of it at the time, but then it led to unexpected consequences. The most egregious one being when a player slides to the bag, comes off it for a second, all the while the fielder — in an entirely unaesthetic action new to the game — follows him with his glove somewhere on his body to maybe get a technical out. It introduced outs that wouldn’t have been outs previous to the introduction of instant replay. On the whole, I think instant replay’s a net negative, and I think I’d feel the same way about roboumps. I’d rather take a few missed strike zone calls in stride and pay more attention to the big picture.