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Gov. Polis is on board with Rockies’ return

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Colorado Rockies news and links for Friday, May 22, 2020

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Colorado Gov. Jared Polis ready for Rockies to play baseball again | Denver Post ($)

Patrick Saunders spoke with Colorado Governor Jared Polis, who believes the safety protocols the MLB has suggested should work, and as long as the players and owners can agree on them and the money, then he is optimistic there can be a 2020 season.

Polis is a baseball fan and expressed what so many of us are feeling:

“We are longing for a sense of normalcy and a sense that we have our lives back. That could mean college football and pro baseball or whatever sport it is … We are ready for a baseball season and eventually for a football season. Especially in these times of high anxiety, we need our diversions and we need our sports.”

Saunders also writes that Polis has spoken to Dick Monfort “four or five times,” as well as Rob Manfred, the MLB commissioner, earlier this week. Polis was also very diplomatic in his views on the negotiations, saying he understands where the players are coming from in taking more risk and less money, while he can also identify with the owners, who are reeling from an unprecedented loss of revenue ($4 billion even if a season is played).

Polis also seems to be viewing the return of baseball with optimism, while also having a sense of reality. Even if it’s not fun to think about, he wonders what to do if there is a COVID-19 outbreak among the players. He uses a hypothetical example of having seven or eight players on one team that have to be quarantined for a week or two and how to handle that. Polis says, “So there needs to be some way where games can be played and rescheduled without a forfeit. Maybe that means more doubleheaders — treat them like rainouts.”

Enough Zoom meetings already, Bud Black says ‘we are ready to go’ | The Denver Channel

Bud Black wants to coach baseball. He doesn’t want to clean his garage again or Zoom anymore. In this check-in with Troy Renck, Black said he thinks a three-week preparation period would be sufficient to get the players ready. He also admitted that he doesn’t think all of the 67-page safety plan in realistic in terms of getting players to stop spitting and he doesn’t want to be like an elementary school teacher instituting a seating chart that includes some dugout and fan-seating spots that will ensure social distancing. To sum up, Black said, “We will do whatever it takes to play in the short-term. I think some of these restrictions and protocols might be loosened a little bit when they see the reality of it.”

Colorado Rockies: Bud Black says Brendan Rodgers “ready to go” | Rox Pile

Bud Black told Rox Pile’s Kevin Henry that Brendan Rodgers will be ready to play without limitations whenever baseball starts back up. Rodgers had just started playing DH in spring training in March, going 3-for-7 in limited action, before the MLB shut down. Rodgers injured his shoulder in June of 2019, forcing his season to end early so he could have surgery on his torn labrum. This is great news for the Rockies, who will need more depth for the expanded rosters and more possibilities for the DH.

Colorado Rockies injury update: Bud Black on Peter Lambert | Rox Pile

On March 10, Peter Lambert was shut down after right forearm and elbow tightness. At the time, it seemed really bad to lose a young pitcher so early in spring training. Ten weeks later, without the pressure of trying to heal fast in a season, Bud Black reports that Lambert is recovering well, starting to play catch, and increasing his arm movement. Due to positive tests and MRIs, Lambert will now slowly able to ramp up the intensity. Black is looking forward to seeing his progress if/when spring training 2.0 starts up.

The Bowden Big Board: Ranking MLB’s top 10 third basemen | The Athletic ($)

The bad news: Nolan Arenado is not ranked No. 1 by Jim Bowden.

The good news: Nolan Arenado is ranked higher than Anthony Rendon.

Alex Bregman got the top spot, but the reasoning is a little dicey in my opinion. Bowden says he almost put Arenado at No. 1, “but it was hard to go against Bregman after the year he had with the bat.”

Here’s the stats Bowden included with his article:

Bregman: .296/.423/.592 HR: 41 RBI: 112 SB: 5 WAR: 9.1 OPS+: 162

Arenado: .315/.379/.583 HR: 41 RBI: 118 SB: 3 WAR: 6.7 OPS+: 129

Apparently, Bregman’s better on-base and slugging percentages and OPS+ trumps Arenado’s defense, which Bowden described perfectly: “The 29-year-old makes highlight after highlight on defense with his off-the-charts range, special body control and elite first-step quickness. He’s literally must-watch when he’s on the field — in fact, he’s made plays I’ve never seen another third baseman make.”

I don’t even want to talk about how Bowden ended the Arenado section of the article telling us all not be surprised if Nolan is dealt anytime between now and 2021’s trade deadline.

The top-ten list was rounded out by Rendon, Manny Machado, Matt Chapman, Josh Donaldson, Kris Bryant, Rafael Devers, Yoán Moncada, and Eugenio Suárez. All were noted as trending upward except Machado, who was marked as downward, and Donaldson and Bryant, who were labelled sideways.

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