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Rockies do not make significant trades at deadline

Despite having a record of 44-59, the Rockies made no moves to improve

The Colorado Rockies did not make any significant moves at the trade deadline, stunning much of baseball.

Trevor Story, Jon Gray, Daniel Bard, and CJ Cron will finish 2021 with the Rockies.

As fans grew concerned about possible trades, interim general manager Bill Schmidt did not find the final hours of the trade deadline hectic or stressful, saying, “No, it wasn’t frantic by any means. We have, we had some conversations with a few clubs. And at the end of the day, nothing came to fruition.”

He reiterated that the Rockies’ front office is not understaffed even with recent starring changes.

Trevor Story

Story was the player most assumed would be traded given that he has indicated he will enter the free agent market. When asked in June about his interest in staying with the Rockies, Story said, “We’ll see what happens. It’s tough for me to say right now, but we’ll see.”

Seattle Mariners v Colorado Rockies Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Rumors swirled through the last week and through the day about possible destinations: the Yankees, the Giants, the Mets, and, later on, the Rays.

The Rockies have been clear that if they did not receive a competitive trade offer, they would keep Story, make a qualifying offer, and take the compensation pick. As Bill Schmidt put it, “At the end of the day, it will be about what we can get back. We are not a farm system for other people.” Ultimately, the Rockies stayed with this philosophy.

They also have not ruled out signing Story to an extension. “We think a lot of Trevor,” Schmidt said today. “Ultimately, decisions will be made, but we love Trevor Story.”

Story’s comments to Patrick Saunders did not suggest an equal level of respect: “I’m confused,” Story said after the deadline had passed. “And I don’t have really anything good to say about the situation and how it unfolded.”

During his time with the Rockies, Story accumulated a bWAR of 24.3 with a career slash line of .339/.521/.860 with 147 home runs. He was a two-time All-Star and competed in the 2021 Home Run Derby. Story is having a down year, slashing .312/.429/.741 with 13 home runs and an OPS+ of 91.

Jon Gray

Gray has said repeatedly and publicly that he wishes to remain with the Rockies. On Thursday, Danielle Allentuck reported, “I just want to wear purple,” Gray said. “I don’t ask for a whole lot here.” Gray said he feels at home in the organization, likes pitching in Colorado, and believes that the Rockies’ best days are not far off.

Pittsburgh Pirates v Colorado Rockies Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

He is having a good year, with an ERA of 3.31 and 91 strikeouts in 98 innings pitched. He has a WHIP of 1.223.

According to Schmidt, the Rockies decided a few days ago against trading Gray: “Jon was drafted and developed by us,” Schmidt said. “I think he’s on record saying he’d like to be here. And we’d like to have Jon, and so we’ll see what happens.”

CJ Cron and Daniel Bard

Although there were rumors of trades for both, especially Bard given the demand for relief pitching, neither player was moved.

Schmidt said that the Rockies never entertained trading Bard, who is now 36: “We made a decision early that we want to Daniel part of this going forward.”

Mychal Givens and Ashton Goudeau

The Rockies did make minor moves, sending relief pitcher Mychal Givens to the Reds for two prospects and purchasing the contract of pitcher Ashton Goudeau, who has been with the Rockies before.

The Future

What this means going forward is anyone’s guess.

The Rockies, always opaque in their thinking, have been consistently hard to read even after the departure of Jeff Bridich. Given that the trade deadline was so active with teams like the Nationals and the Cubs making significant rebuilding moves while the Dodgers, White Sox, and Yankees added players, the Rockies’ inactivity is frustrating for fans eager to get a sense of the team’s plans going forward.

When asked what his message to Rockies fans would be, Bill Schmidt said, “We’re trying to do what we believe is in the best interests of the Colorado Rockies, trying to build a winning club.”

Schmidt also indicated that the Rockies would continue to follow their strategy of being a draft-and-develop organization: “We realized, first and foremost, we are always going to be a scout-and-development organization. Along the way, though, sometimes you do need to fill spots where you don’t have that player available to help your club out. And we’ll look at the free agent market. We know we need to get better as a club, and we’ll take those steps in the offseason.”

This story has been updated to include statements from interim general manager Bill Schmidt.