Things seem to have hit even more of a snag for the Rockies as of late. C.J. Cron and Randal Grichuk just got traded, Kris Bryant, Charlie Blackmon and Chase Anderson just got hurt, and there's a chance that Jurickson Profar and Brent Suter could go too. The Rox are the one team in the NL West with absolutely no chance of competing, as the Padres have even had a decent enough week in addition to the strong Giants, D-Backs and Dodgers seasons. It's another 24 hours of tension for a team that's just had rotten luck since the core of the 2018 team dissipated.
But...Brendan Rodgers just got activated, and is jumping back into the lineup. So after 4 months of waiting, the Rockies may have just got their hero back.
Not that it was the difference between first and last or anything, but I do credit the inefficiency of the Rockies this year to not having someone like Rodgers to rally everyone around [in addition to, y'know, Marquez and Senza being hurt]. The team signed people like Kris Bryant, Jurickson Profar and, well, C.J. Cron, to build the heart of the lineup after cementing McMahon and Rodgers in there, and that really has not happened. This year, a lot has rested on Ryan McMahon's shoulders, and while he's delivered another great year, it's gotta be up to more than him. Tovar, Jones and Doyle are young and beginning to figure it out, but not to that level yet. And so here we are, a Rockies team that can barely be relied upon to hit for power. McMahon leads the team in homers with 16. Ellis Burks weeps.
Since the very beginning of the season, though, one of this team's saving graces has been the bullpen, and it's been durable enough to continue to be one of their best attributes. I think the trick is having enough guys that are either really young and still under team control for a while, or contracted for the next several years and not going anywhere, so that's why only really Brent Suter is in the line of fire. Justin Lawrence is the most impressive of these, he's been an excellent middle relief guy, with a 2.89 ERA in 59 innings. Since Pierce Johnson's departure, Lawrence has been closing games, and he's been sharp enough, with 8 saves already. And then behind him you have Jake Bird, Matt Koch, Daniel Bard and, for the moment at least, Suter and Brad Hand. That's not a bad assortment of relievers, and they've at the very least taken the sting out of half the starters being injured.
I'm hoping Rodgers' return will add a little bit of comfort to this struggling Rockies team, especially as people continue to depart. It may be a bit more complicated than that, and they might even be waving goodbye to Rodgers in another year if this keeps up, but it's nice to hope that something good comes of all this.
Coming Tomorrow-It's been a while since I've looked at a homegrown Red Sox pitching prospect and gone 'ohhhhboy' to myself. I mean, yes, Tanner Houck, but this one might be something special.