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Nolan Arenado says this year’s Rockies could ‘do something special’

Rockies news and links for March 30, 2019

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Nolan Arenado says Rockies can ‘do something special’ | UPI
Alex Butler of UPI spoke to Colorado Rockies’ third baseman Nolan Arenado after Thursday’s Opening Day victory over the Miami Marlins. Arenado said that the Rockies will be looking to put together more consistently good at-bats throughout the 2019 season—something the team did not do with regularity in 2018.

Five things we learned about the Rockies on Opening Day, starting with Kyle Freeland | The Athletic ($)
It may only be one game, but Nick Groke of The Athletic had some takeaways from Thursday’s Opening Day affair. For starters, Kyle Freeland looked every bit the part of an Opening Day starter. Even if he wasn’t at his absolute best, he battled and won most of his matchups. Next, the combination of David Dahl and Ryan McMahon could be a very fun one to watch this season. It’s amazing how much success these young talented players can have when they’re given a full-time starting role at the beginning of the season!

We also found from Opening Day that it might be a neck and neck race between Arenado and Trevor Story for the team home run lead once again. On Thursday, Story hit his third homer in three Opening Day starts (he hit two off Zack Greinke on Opening Day 2016). Thursday’s game also showed the ability of the team to produce consistently good at-bats from top to bottom in the batting order. The five through eight hitters went 7-for-15. Finally, we saw good outfield defense from the new David Dahl in left field, Ian Desmond in center and Charlie Blackmon in right combination. There were some concerns heading into the season (particularly the transitions of Desmond and Blackmon), but so far, so good.

Passan: The state of baseball as 2019 season begins | ESPN
Service-time manipulation has become the norm around Major League Baseball. It was refreshing to see prospects Pete Alonso make the roster for the New York Mets and Chris Paddack and Fernando Tatís Jr. make the roster for the San Diego Padres. If it weren’t for injury, we’d likely be talking about Vladimir Guerrero Jr. of the Toronto Blue Jays in discussions about service time. If it weren’t for a contract extension, the same could likely have been said for Eloy Jiménez of the Chicago White Sox.

Jeff Passan of ESPN has an inside story about how Manny Machado and Eric Hosmer met with Padres’ Owner Ron Fowler with their proposal to have Tatís start the year in the majors. We may never know just how much they really played a role in his MLB debut though…

Passan has more about service-time manipulation and more from the state of the game as baseball tries to expand pace of play initiatives and promoting to a younger audience all while players and owners remain at odds.