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Sim Garrett Hampson has earned the title of everyday center fielder

Sim Rockies news and statistics from June 8-June 14, 2020

The Colorado Rockies finished the #PurpleRowSim week with a 4-2 record. After losing the first two games to the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Rockies salvaged game three and proceeded to sweep the Pittsburgh Pirates. The sweep over the Pirates was particularly impressive as the Bucs have a 42-29 record in 2020, good enough for a tie for first place in the National League Central along with the Milwaukee Brewers.

In the final four games of the week, the Rockies scored 40 total runs (by far the best four-game stretch of run-scoring for the Rockies this season).

The Hampson Also Rises

Leading the way was Garrett Hampson, who after finally receiving consistent playing time, saw his average rise from .196 this time last week to its current mark of .316. A 14-for-25 stretch at the plate will do that for you. Hampson now has an on-base percentage over the .400 mark and is comfortably over .500 in terms of slugging percentage. Hampson has been so impressive that Sim Bud Black has handed him the reins as the everyday center fielder. It wasn’t hard to force Black’s hand as David Dahl (who began the season as the everyday center fielder), Ian Desmond (who began the season as the everyday left fielder), and Sam Hilliard have all posted disappointing numbers in 2020.

The .180-batting Hilliard only received a single plate appearance this past week, in which he drew a walk, while Desmond has seen his batting average drop to .222. But what about the platoon splits for Desmond, you ask? Well, yes, he is batting better against left-handed pitching, but it’s to the tune of a .224 batting average.

Out of Left Field

Dahl had been on a terrible stretch, but a good series against the Pirates saw his slash line improve to .252/.303/.451. And he is batting .275 against right-handers. Black should generally be comfortable with penciling in an outfield (from left to right) of Dahl, Hampson and Charlie Blackmon against righties, while Desmond will probably still receive the bulk of the left field at-bats vs. southpaws. For his part, Hampson’s average is above .300 against both righties and lefties.

Platoon Network

Another platoon appears to be shaping up at first base, where Daniel Murphy is batting .276 against righties and only .197 vs. lefties. Right now, Josh Fuentes is getting the opportunity to face lefties but is only batting .189 on the year in 37 at-bats (with no platoon split). Chris Owings has 88 at-bats on the season and is batting .250 but only .233 against southpaws, so neither jump out as an obvious platoon partner. The hope will be that Fuentes figures things out or that Owings impresses enough in his pinch-hit role to earn more action.

Speaking of platoons, whatever’s going on with Elias Díaz and Drew Butera appears to be working. They have combined for an overall slash of .260/.329/.373, but when you combine the performance of Díaz against lefties and Butera against righties, they’re batting .345 (Díaz .370 against southpaws and Butera .300 against righties). While Díaz and Butera both bat from the right side of the plate, the “platoon” has been working out quite well.

The Usual Suspects

All this talk of offense is without even mentioning the usual suspects continuing their hot hitting. Last week, Nolan Arenado and Ryan McMahon both had two-homer games (McMahon had three on the week). Arenado’s 21 home runs now lead the NL and McMahon is right behind him for second place. If it weren’t for Hampson’s other-worldly week, we might be paying more attention to McMahon’s 7-for-18 stretch. McMahon’s been a rather streaky hitter in 2020, at least in terms of AVG and OBP. His slugging percentage has been consistently well above .500. His power surge is looking more and more legit as the season wears on!

Sim Rockies Batting Stats through July 12, 2020

Name AB HR RBI SB AVG R H OBP SLG OPS BB K WAR
Name AB HR RBI SB AVG R H OBP SLG OPS BB K WAR
Nolan Arenado 359 27 68 0 0.326 65 117 0.402 0.632 1.035 46 66 5.2
Charlie Blackmon* 305 17 42 1 0.298 49 91 0.351 0.570 0.931 30 70 2.4
Drew Butera 92 1 8 1 0.283 10 26 0.383 0.370 0.753 14 19 0.8
David Dahl 353 13 46 1 0.249 42 88 0.303 0.470 0.773 27 79 0.7
Yonathan Daza 8 0 0 0 0.250 1 2 0.250 0.250 0.500 0 1 0.0
Elias Díaz 154 3 17 0 0.273 8 42 0.315 0.383 0.698 10 30 1.2
Garrett Hampson 150 5 14 2 0.247 25 37 0.323 0.400 0.723 15 31 -0.1
Sam Hilliard 124 10 20 1 0.234 17 29 0.291 0.565 0.856 10 38 1.0
Matt Kemp 25 1 1 0 0.320 5 8 0.393 0.560 0.953 3 4 0.3
Ryan McMahon 329 24 53 0 0.240 52 79 0.324 0.535 0.858 38 112 0.8
Brian Mundell 32 0 4 0 0.344 8 11 0.421 0.375 0.796 5 3 0.3
Daniel Murphy 318 6 30 1 0.261 31 83 0.310 0.396 0.706 21 47 0.0
Trevor Story 374 24 59 11 0.251 56 94 0.316 0.543 0.858 36 112 2.6
Raimel Tapia 68 1 7 0 0.162 6 11 0.247 0.235 0.482 8 11 -0.3
*IL

Making the Márquez

On the pitching side of things, Germán Márquez continues to shave down his ERA, which currently sits at 6.32 after an impressive 8-inning outing in which he allowed only two runs.

The Bullpen is Mightier

We likely won’t see any Rockies’ pitchers throw in the simulated All-Star Game, but if anyone does, it would be Tyler Kinley. And were it not for time missed due to injury, Scott Oberg could find his name in the mix as well. Regardless of the national recognition, Kinley and Oberg are beginning to make for an enviable one-two punch at the back end of the bullpen.

Kinley certainly didn’t do anything wrong when he was in the closer role, but Oberg’s return pushed him back to the eighth inning, where his 2.16 ERA and 11.2 K/9 has been tough for opposing hitters to handle.

Oberg has now made four appearances since returning from the Injured List and has yet to walk a batter, which is very good news. The fact that his walk rate has dropped to 7.2 per nine innings shows just how troubling it was. Perhaps we’re finding out the wrist issue that landed Oberg on the IL was impacting him for much of the season prior. The good news is Oberg is looking good closing out games now.

Grills Just Wanna Have Fun

Evan Grills has now made three major league starts and walked a batter for the first time ever in the first inning of his third appearance. For the first time, Grills labored in an inning (the sixth inning of Friday’s win over the Pirates), but it can be easily overlooked for now. Grills has been quite impressive.

Freeland Before Time

Kyle Freeland has not been having much success himself. In his last 14 innings, Freeland has allowed 21 runs (albeit only 15 earned) on 25 hits. He has struck out six, while walking eight. Freeland’s strikeout rate of 4.5/9 is concerning. It’s impressive and surprising that his ERA still sits at 3.77, but it would be advantageous for him to figure things out, especially with Jon Gray posting a 4.67 ERA in 17 1/3 innings in Triple-A Albuquerque, suggesting he’s not ready to return to the Show just yet.

Cold WAR Kids

Suffice to say, the Rockies have four batters who have reached at least 1.0 Wins Above Replacement. Best among the pitching staff is Antonio Senzatela’s 0.7 WAR.

Offensive Pitchers

Rockies pitchers did prove to be quite impressive with the bats last week, with Márquez collecting two hits and four RBI in one of his starts, while Chi Chi González hit his first major league home run and Grills notched his first big league hit.

Sim Rockies Pitching Stats through July 12, 2020

Name W L IP K ERA WHIP SV BB G GS R ER WAR K/9 BB/9
Name W L IP K ERA WHIP SV BB G GS R ER WAR K/9 BB/9
Tim Collins 2 1 29.0 30 3.41 1.620 0 19 34 0 12 11 0.1 9.3 5.9
Wade Davis 1 3 37.1 39 6.51 1.580 3 12 47 0 27 27 0.5 9.4 2.9
Carlos Estevéz 1 4 54.0 77 4.50 1.130 0 14 56 0 28 27 0.3 12.8 2.3
Kyle Freeland 3 8 89.0 47 4.15 1.290 0 21 17 17 49 41 0.6 4.8 2.1
Jon Gray 2 9 77.0 69 5.84 1.520 0 39 15 15 50 50 0.2 8.1 4.6
Joe Harvey 0 2 9.2 8 14.90 2.170 0 1 13 0 17 16 -0.3 7.5 0.9
Jeff Hoffman 5 1 74.1 55 5.45 1.450 0 27 44 2 45 45 0.5 6.7 3.3
Tyler Kinley 3 0 29.2 36 2.12 0.910 9 11 29 0 7 7 0.6 10.9 3.3
Germán Márquez 7 8 89.2 87 6.22 1.670 0 33 18 18 65 62 0.1 8.7 3.3
Scott Oberg 0 1 23.0 28 2.35 1.090 16 13 26 0 6 6 0.6 11.0 5.1
James Pazos 1 1 51.2 52 3.14 1.350 0 18 50 0 18 18 1.0 9.1 3.1
Antonio Senzatela 5 4 74.2 61 4.70 1.500 1 24 25 12 42 39 0.5 7.4 2.9
Jack Wynkoop 0 0 12.0 9 2.25 0.670 0 2 2 2 5 3 0.4 6.8 1.5

Sim NL West Standings through July 12, 2020

Team W L GB
Team W L GB
Dodgers 57 39 --
Padres 56 41 1.5
Diamondbacks 49 47 8.0
Giants 45 50 11.5
Rockies 42 54 15.0

Sim NL Wild Card Standings through July 12, 2020

Team W L GB
Team W L GB
Padres 56 41 --
Pirates 51 45 --
Nationals 50 47 1.5
Diamondbacks 49 47 2.0
Reds 47 49 4.0
Cardinals 46 51 5.5
Giants 45 50 5.5
Marlins 45 51 6.0
Cubs 45 51 6.0
Phillies 45 51 6.0
Rockies 42 54 9.0
Mets 42 54 9.0