The Colorado Rockies just played a two-game series against a World Series favorite in the Houston Astros. And for as much as anything can happen on a given day over the course of the baseball season, the results of both games were predictable and showed the Rockies just how big the gap is between them and the elite teams in baseball.
The Rockies are now 10 games below .500 and certainly must think they are officially out of it in 2019. So it is that manager Bud Black is quoted in this article from Kyle Newman as saying that the Rockies hope to reach the point where the Astros are now at some point in the future. After making the playoffs two years in a row, 2019 will be a lost year, so here’s hoping the Rockies actually make some moves to change their roster in hopes of being a contender in 2020.
While the Rockies confront their identity crisis in terms of where they stand compared to the best teams in the league, they at least know one thing for sure: they have some star players. That group is led by Nolan Arenado.
So you would think when it comes to a list like this one, that’s at least one thing the Rockies have going for them. Arenado will be there, right? Not so, in this case. For on this list from Will Leitch, we are reminded that Arenado is the same age as Mike Trout. At least there is no shame in being behind Trout on any list that is measuring overall greatness.
Speaking of Arenado, he is one of the main characters in this piece from Grant Paulsen about the situation the Nationals find themselves in with their own star third baseman. It’s amazing how similar Rendon and Arenado are as players, even after you get the Coors Field caveat included in the discussion.
Because they are comparable as true star players at the same position, Rendon and his agent will be able to point to Arenado’s extension with the Rockies as the starting point for his own contract as he looks to free agency this winter. It’s referred to here as “The Arenado Problem,” but let’s just say that I’m a long way from feeling bad for Washington’s front office.
Where teams once faced pressure from fans and the actions of other teams in their ballparks, there is now pressure from the government to keep fans safe. This letter to Rob Manfred, who still does not want to pressure teams on what they should do with netting, seemed to come specifically in response to a woman being struck by a foul ball in the head in Texas this weekend - although that is only the latest in a series of serious injuries. Billy Witz writes about these events and what it might mean for the league moving forward.
On the farm
If you were looking for better pitching from the guys you know in the minor leagues, things didn’t go much better. Jeff Hoffman was beat up in a losing effort, allowing nine runs on eight hits in just four innings of work. As if that weren’t enough, Harrison Musgrave celebrated his return to the ‘Topes by allowing three runs on five hits in less than an inning of work.