Sunday, May 19, 2019
Nolan Arenado's War
Last year, the Colorado Rockies got a team together that was good enough to break into the NL Wild Card game. This year, despite most of the team staying together, and more prospects and younger players ascending to the roster...the team has sank to 4th place.
It's not really that the Rockies have gotten worse, though...I mean, you can make the argument that aside from Nolan Arenado, a lot of their core is playing weaker than last season, especially the pitching, but...they wouldn't be in fourth if it weren't for the Padres and Diamondbacks catching fire. Those teams have improved over bad projections and built great teams with next to nothing.
But the Padres and D-Backs don't have a leadership figure like Nolan Arenado. Not even close. Arenado has a 1.7 WAR already, and has been one of the more consistent standout players in the NL, and would have had an MVP had it not been for...well, better players like Christian Yelich and Javier Baez. I'd put him in the Goldschmidt category of just being unlucky. But to say he's helped shape these Rockies teams into something formidable has been an understatement.
In the absence of DJ LeMahieu, people like Brendan Rodgers have been brought up in the same vein as Arenado, and the lineup has essentially been built around him. He's compatible with the rest of this lineup in a way that...if he leaves, I don't know if the team will regroup. Thankfully he's signed on for a while.
Not sure if Arenado will be able to lead this team to anything huge this year, but I'm expecting big personal numbers for him.
Coming Tomorrow- As the youth movement rises, one of the last remnants of the 2016 playoff team continues his reign.