As the calendar turns to September, it’s been apparent for a while that the only meaningful baseball the Rockies will be playing going forward is going to only be meaningful for their opponents. The Dodgers are currently on 113 win pace and have their last six games of the season against the Rockies, all at home - setting the stage perfectly for a run at the all time wins record.
This is the team currently 19 games under .500 that GM Bill Schmidt said was ready to “be competitive now” and made a strong commitment to back that up with the Kris Bryant signing. The team has gone through it’s fair share of bad luck but, as well know, they have not been close to competitive this year. With that lack of competitiveness there have been more and more calls for the Monforts to sell the team and start fresh.
But despite the fact that the on-field product hasn’t been successful, from the business side the Rockies overall season has to be seen as a success. They are currently eighth in the league in attendance, ahead of teams like Boston, the Cubs, Seattle, and Toronto.
(Yes, that is the Dodgers at the very top right of the chart.) Yet every team in front of them in attendance are having extremely successful seasons. And the teams that are around them in both attendance numbers and winning percentage - the Cubs - are teams with rich baseball histories. If Chicago can’t pack Wrigley on a Saturday afternoon, then something is wrong.
It seems that (at least for now) people just love the Rockies, win or lose. Coors Field is a beautiful place to watch a ball game. The Rockies are a likable team, and if you don’t like them, then chances are you like the visitors. And this isn’t new, Coors Field has always had great attendance numbers, competing with and outstripping the older, more established baseball markets. The last time the Rockies weren’t in the top 10 for attendance was 2016. So for the Monforts, what’s not to like? Denver may still be a football town, but it sure enjoys some baseball on the side.
The Rockies franchise was recently valued at $1.385 billion, a massive step up from the $95 million the Monforts paid for it in 1992. To say they would come out on top of this transaction is an understatement, but there does not seem to be any movement, just rumors. And as long as the Rockies keep drawing many fans, the rumors will likely stay just that.
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Rockies’ farm system rises up the rankings, providing hope for the future: “There is talent at every level” | The Denver Post ($)
Don’t look now but the Rockies have a farm. The meteoric rise of Ezeqieul Tovar along with another strong draft in 2022 and continued development by other prospects has the Rockies viewed as a top 10 farm system by both Baseball America and MLB Pipeline. Most of this talent is still more than a year out of the majors, but it’s definitely cause for hope in LoDo.
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On The Farm
There was no joy in Albuquerque last night. The Isotopes struck out 13 times against Round Rock’s (TEX) pitching and lost their fifth game in a row. The Express scored three runs early but then were held in check by three scoreless innings from Matt Dennis. In the seventh, everything unraveled as Round Rock put up a four spot followed by a five in the eighth, effectively ending the game. Alan Trejo and Carlos Pérez both smacked homers but the offense was lacking on the rest of the day. The ‘topes will try to right the ship tomorrow against the Sugarland Space Cowboys (HOU).
Starter Noah Davis was under constant attack Sunday, surrendering single runs in four of his five innings of work against the Sea Dogs (BOS). Hartford’s offense couldn’t keep up. Zac Veen stole a base, had a double and scored, but he was the only run on a day where the Yard Goats reached base just eight times. Next up, Hartford will play the Reading Fightin Phils (PHI).
Pitching control was hard to come by at Funko Field yesterday. Batters reached via walk a total of 14 times, but neither team truly capitalized in what ended up being a relatively low scoring game. Bladimir Restituyo had a homer and a single and Hunter Goodman had a double, a single, and a run scored to lead the offense. The loss had the Indians drop the series to the AquaSox and they fell to 60-57 on the year. They’ll try to win the next series against the Vancouver Canadians (TOR).
Fresno was denied both access to the scoreboard and their 12th straight win yesterday as four Stockton (OAK) pitchers combined for a shutout. Grizzlies starter Jarrod Cande started the game off with six shutout innings (five strikeouts, no walks), but Stockton eventually broke through in the ninth to take the lead. Fresno is now 11-1 in their last 12 and 16-4 in their last 20. They will welcome the Modesto Nuts (SEA) to town for the next series tomorrow.
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