Remember last week when I wrote about how Charlie Blackmon wasn’t getting enough coverage nationally about his hot start? My goodness how seven days can change things. The only explanation is that the national media collective read my article and had a change of heart. Right?
Or maybe it’s the fact that Charlie’s current batting average is an even .500? Yeah it’s probably that.
But let me repeat myself. Through 17 games, Charlie Blackmon is getting a hit, on average, every other time he comes to the plate. The talk since the 60 game season was announced has been all about the increased chances of someone hitting .400 on the year. Charlie is besting that by 100 points!
It is unlikely that Chuck Nazty sees his way to the end of the season maintaining that .500 average but suddenly, with more than a quarter of the season already in the books, .400 doesn’t sound that crazy. A lot of things will have to go right between now and October, and yes it’s true that reaching the .400 mark in a 60 game is not as impressive as doing it in a 162 game season, but the fact that this is a legitimate conversation 17 games into the season is pretty special. Keep raking, Chuck!
Since nothing ever seems to be simple in Rockies Nation, we’re not allowed to bask in the glory that is Charlie Blackmon without acknowledging the other side of the spectrum that currently houses Ryan McMahon and David Dahl. McMahon has struck out a total of 12 times in the Rockies’ nine games during the current month, and is the owner of a measly .204 batting average. Not the kind of numbers we were expecting when predicting a breakout year for the second basemen.
Meanwhile Dahl, looking to improve on last year’s All-Star campaign got off to a flying 4-for-9 start. It’s been all downhill since then as a 10-for-56 slump has taken his season average to .215, nearly 100 points short of last year’s .302 mark.
If the Rockies are going to build on their stellar start to the season, they’re going to need these two guys to step up. Blackmon can’t hit .500 forever (I don’t think...) and the team will need offense from all spots in the lineup to maintain their push towards postseason baseball.
While this week’s series with the Diamondbacks has featured a whole lot of scoring, the Rockies starters have, overall, continued to put in strong performances. For Kyle Freeland, it has a little something to do with the frustration of last season’s disappointments on the mound for the whole pitching staff.
“We took (last year) personally. For me, especially, I’m very much pitching with a chip on my shoulder and want to prove that last year was nothing but a fluke.”
Four starts into the 2020 campaign and it looks like “fluke” is a pretty accurate descriptor for 2019. After Tuesday’s wild win over the Diamondbacks, Freeland has turned in four quality starts to go along with a 2-0 record and a 2.45 ERA. At the start of the week, Rockies starters had combined for the third best ERA in the majors, a measly 2.65.
“We are having a ton of fun,” Freeland said. “We are feeding off each other and we are executing our game plans to the best of our abilities. We are keeping teams off-balance.”
Now that’s the kind of attitude in the rotation that could make this club dangerous come October.
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