The 2019 season has been bad for the Colorado Rockies, both on and off the field. It’s no surprise, then, that the weekly FanPulse surveys about the confidence in the team have been so poor. The most recent one has it at 8% confidence in the direction of the team.
Last week, we held our own poll. Rather than asking a yes/no question about the direction of the team, I thought it would be illuminating to ask about trust in the front office. I asked the question according to the best practices of my day job, which sometimes involves writing surveys: “How much do you disagree or agree with the following statement: ‘I trust the Rockies front office to make good roster decisions most of the time.’” The options ranged from “Strongly disagree” to “Strongly agree.” As of Thursday afternoon, 636 Rockies fans voted. And the results were, as they say, not great, Bob:
So! More than half of the fans voted “Strong disagree” and about 87% who voted either selected “Strongly disagree” or “Disagree.” The takeaway here is that front office does not have the trust of at least one contingent of fans.
There are caveats to these results. One might read this and say that the results are skewed because the Rockies are more than 20 games below .500 and in last place. That is a factor, but, of course, the team’s record is a pretty good baseline to start when thinking about this question, especially because there are so many roster decisions that have contributed to the poor season, whether it’s a lack of pitching depth, sinking millions of dollars into a bad bullpen, or signing veterans to expensive contracts to play out of position.
The other caveat is that this is in no way a representative sample. Despite that, it’s still a sizable number of votes. And while we don’t know who exactly voted, the folks who find their way to Purple Row tend to pay attention to the team a lot more than the casual fan. What the simple poll lacks in quantity of response, it makes up for in quality. That, and there’s no way to pretend that the 87% who voted is anything other than an indictment of the front office.
Here is a sampling of the best comments from the article, mostly from the “Disagree” and “Strongly disagree” camp. There were not many explanations for “Agree” or “Strongly agree” votes, but I’d still be interested in hearing them!
“Most of the time” puts me in the Strong Disagree category
The evidence is there, from the FA failures to Tauchman and Murphy to the general refusal to trade assets to the odd moves made when they do pull the trigger (Garcia for Harvey??) to holding onto declining assets far too long, they make the wrong moves far too often. The only really successful transaction of the Bridich era has been Marquez. Beyond that, I don’t know if I’d give any other moves even a “C” grade.
I actually thought about this for a bit before answering.
Part of that process was trying to come up with a list of things I think the Rockies Front Office is good at. And….I couldn’t. I can’t think of any area in which I believe they’re particularly competent.
What really pushed me into “strongly disagree” territory was their continual inability to admit when they’re wrong. I’m not bent out of shape about their being wrong or making mistakes: to quote Bud Black, “That’s baseball”. But to ignore mistakes, or double down on them, or keep making the same ones because you just KNOW eventually doing the same thing over and over will yield different results (hint: it doesn’t): that’s inexcusable.
BTW, I’m not asking for a public admission in words. I’m thinking more of actions like when they finally(!) sent Scott Oberg down to work on things, and he came back a different pitcher – and a good one. In order to fix problems, first you have to acknowledge that they exist. At least to yourself. I just don’t see this happening, which means I don’t anticipate much in the way of positive change.
I would absolutely love it if they would prove me wrong.
Will shed some sunshine on an otherwise dark shadow.
I got to watch some Rockies minor league games this season, and have to say I feel this organization has done a good (maybe great in some areas and specific positions) in scouting for and bringing in solid and excellent baseball players. I was especially impressed with the talent level on the Grand Junction Rockies team. Lots of talented players that play the game right and well (lots of speed and hard contact with some good/solid pitching, just enough to keep the team in the games). So scouting is not much of a weakness as I thought. My fear is that this organization is not doing a good job of developing their players because of the culture that has been installed: a very slow to change and conservative culture. This hurts big time as they get closer to the parent club.
I hope the organization sees this and moves toward a more progressive and up wit the times culture. Probably wont be at the Dodgers or Astros level overnight, but baby steps. At least look how the other mid market teams are doing it (As and Diamondbacks). The culture needs to change more than anything, and that starts at the top.
I voted “disagree” because...
…it specifically referred to roster decisions which I understood to mean everything from waiver claims, dfa’s, minor league options, trades, Rule 5 draft adds and protection, September roster adds, the IL placements, etc… Overall, the FO stinks, but some of their moves are correct and I would agree with. Just not very many.
FO is bottom 5 in baseball. They haven’t excelled in any area and have a very spotty track record.
Pros: Marquez trade, trading Tulo (right idea, mixed because of return package), grabbing Wolters
Cons: Drafts have been pretty mixed. Probably the worst sequence of FA moves I’ve seen in a long time, complete inability to trust prospects not named David Dahl with regular playing time.
The FO needs to go – I give them a pass on this season to a degree because I think a lot of what has us completely screwed is the new ball, but realistically, there’s a gap in decision making or we’ve just been straight up outclassed in the analytics area by other teams. JB didn’t push last year when the Dodgers were super weak and let the division slip by 1 game, we’ve made the playoffs twice now due to the creation of the WC2. The core that got us to the playoffs was largely inherited. There are barely any positives.