The question of catching for the Rockies has lingered all offseason, but with the optioning of Tom Murphy, it gets a bit more clear. Now just Tony Wolters and Chris Iannetta remain to take charge behind the plate. Murphy will go through waivers, and he will go to Triple-A if he doesn’t get claimed. He didn’t have the best spring training, but neither did Wolters. However, the Rockies seem to be more enthusiastic for Wolters’s defense and framing ability. This move goes along with optioning Pat Valaika and Carlos Estevez and trading Mike Tauchman to the Yankees. The Opening Day roster is winnowing down to the final players, including Raimel Tapia and Mark Reynolds, and we’re getting closer and closer to the start of the 2019 season.
The Rockies did not make many new additions in the offseason, choosing instead to extend contracts with Nolan Arenado and Bud Black. They’ve said goodbye to DJ LeMahieu, Adam Ottavino, Gerardo Parra, and Carlos Gonzalez. The Rockies did bring in Daniel Murphy, who can hopefully contribute to a more successful offense. David Dahl can hopefully do the same for the outfield, bringing more hitting power than Parra and Gonzalez. As long as these two players can stay healthy, the Rockies might stand a decent chance of a third consecutive playoff appearance. They’ll have to really step up, though, as other teams have also improved during the offseason.
Tom Murphy had a ton of potential for the Rockies, but that brought high expectations as well. Murphy did not quite live up to these hopes, and the Rockies have placed him on waivers. Not only was his slash line poor, but he couldn’t quite deliver defensively either. The Rockies faced a tough decision this offseason in terms of catchers. Since they opted not to pick up anyone for the position, they had to choose between Murphy, Tony Wolters, and Chris Iannetta. Iannetta was poised as the frontrunner early, so it came down to Wolters and Murphy. Wolters’ versatility ended up winning the battle for him, with Murphy waiting to see if the Rockies will try to get a trade for him before the season starts. Murphy still has a good deal of potential and could find success with another team in the 2019 season.
Kyle Freeland is coming off a fantastic season, and he’s ready to start the season off strong for the Rockies. He’s worked hard in this offseason to grow and develop into an even better pitcher, which has paid off in getting him this honor. It’s not too much of a surprise, and it’s a great opportunity for the young hometown boy to kick the season off right. Following Freeland in the rotation will be German Marquez, then Tyler Anderson, Jon Gray, and Chad Bettis. Despite a strong showing in spring training, Jeff Hoffman will be optioned to Triple-A.
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The Rockies defeated the Reds 4-3 in Sunday’s game. German Marquez delivered an impressive start, and Ben Bowden finished drew some attention while finishing the game strong. The Rockies next game will take place Monday against the Isotopes.