2005-08-16T07:43:42.800-07:00Well folks, it's been a crazy ride this year, and for added stability, Gabe and I shelled out the monies for a domain name and hosting (for the love of god click on adsense).
2005-08-14T16:55:01.986-07:00The Rockies just aren't that good. When they are good, it's usually for one game which is surrounded by two or three horrible horrible games. We saw that kind of thing over the homestand this week. In the first game, the Rox squandered a good pitching performance, losing 4-2, and then in the second game, the Rockies were out of it by the fifth. On Sunday, the Rox continued their suck-fest with another poor starting pitching performance and poor offensive production, doing nothing to damage the undeniable argument that they just aren't very good.
2006-02-21T13:05:28.756-08:00What happened to the starting rotation?
2005-08-12T21:41:28.910-07:00Well after two nights of not watching the Rockies play, the Rockies are two games worse in terms of record. That's no good.
2005-08-10T21:31:24.793-07:00The Colorado Rockies cranked out their third victory on the current homestand Wednesday evening. The win, which moved the Rockies to 3-1 since their return to Coors on Monday morning, was largely the product of recently activated starter Aaron Cook. The red-headed sinkerballer tossed six and a third innings of very solid ball, allowing three earned runs.
2005-08-09T07:05:55.313-07:00Two wins on the same day? What did we do to deserve this? Oh right, months/years of dedication to the team. I'm feeling like Mike Jones after he hit the big time but before he got slapped with a 250,00 dollar phone bill. Word.
2005-08-09T06:12:49.176-07:00Dear God it was hot today. Gabe, Mark (not of TGTBATB) and I met up with some good people at the Rockies game and had a nice time. Everything was expensive except for the tickets (rockpile tix, friendshipizing w/usher who clearly approved of youthful mischief allowed for closer viewing), and in the words of one of the good people we met up with, Coors Field "financially and emotionally raped us." Also, I drank a 2 liter of the official non-alcoholic Jew beverage seltzer and half a liter of Coke in less than three innings. Shade never came. Ever.
2005-08-07T23:46:03.906-07:00Well it's a big day in the news - aside from the Rockies losing, Peter Jennings died, the submarine dudes were rescued, and it's the anniversary of the dropping of the bomb on Hiroshima. And in breaking news, myself and cohort Sam will be hitting the ballpark tomorrow with a couple other members of the gang for the two-fer deal included with this upcoming day/night doubleheader. I'm excited to see Kim/Kim pitch, especially the latter, who should put on quite a show given his late hottness.And yet, I still have a few notes about tonight's game:1. Carvajal just didn't seem to be in sync. After giving up back-to-back homeruns to thel ikes of Clarck and Glaus, you'd think he would realize that hanging sliders and various other pitches doesn't work.2. Okay, I'm gonna be honest. I'm in the minority in the blogging world because I'm of the opinion that Miles should be starting ahead of Gonzales. But, going 2-4 with a double and a single does give him a pretty good day. The only knock I can put on him is the strikeout, but as Sam constantly reminds me, Miles has the same disease with a worse OBP. I'm beginning to turn a little on this issue3. Atkins continues to hit well, but here's the best part (even though he missed an RBI opportunity): he had 1 BB, but 0 strikeouts. What I'm liking more and more about Atkins, is that he gets good wood on the ball. I've rarely seen him in bad at-bats, and his defensive play has been very good.4. The basepaths are still looking like slip-n-slides with Closser behind the plate. He allowed 4, count'em, 4 stolen bases today, three from the speedy but aging Craig Counsell. Now I'm not saying that Counsell is a bad person to let steal, because he's a damned good runner, but Closser just does not seem to have the arm to play a good defensive catcher. And even though he's been on an offensive tear recently, he went 0-3 with a walk, and is still batting 2 points below defensive stud Danny Ardoin. Yes, his OBP and slugging are a little higher, but it's my opinion that (at least on the road), defense is worth more than offense. When the Rockies are scoring 4 runs, I'd much rather get Counsell out twice than have our 8-hole man reach base .24 more times out of every ten at-bats. I realize that JD is a better slugger, so maybe my argument doesn't hold up as nicely at Coors field, but Danny Ardoin should be given many more road starts, especially considering the fact that pitchers perform better when he's behind the plate. Now I know I've spent a lot of time ranting about this, but all said and done, I'm rather content with our catching situation. JD will only become a better hitter (as will Ardoin, for that matter), and Danny will only get better defensively. Some have called this our weakest position, but even with TG out, I don't see why - we've got a pretty solid core.5. Despite the fact that we only scored 4 runs tonight/last night, I've really liked how this team has been scoring lately. We've been able to put together good smallball with a lot of clutch hits and some decent power. Get Helton/Barmes back in the mix, and I think we'll have a damned good offense, especially as this team starts to come together offensively even more. Over the last few series, I've really seen an improvement, and we haven't had a 2-run night in a long time, which is a good sign. That said, we could use a little bit more production out of the likes of Corey Sullivan and Garret Atkins (the latter in the power department), but I think that will come.6. This brings me to six. As I believe my co-blogger mentioned, Francis is considered an RotY contender even though his numbers have been sketchy lately. The reason he's won 11? Run support. Francis has been getting stupendous run support all season long, and that's half the reason why he's been successful. If, as I've mentioned, our offense continues to produce, we can put a winning team o[...]
2005-08-07T07:36:00.166-07:00I stumbled upon Lou From Littleton's comments on the Chac trade while looking for an example of Aaron J. Lopez' lame writing. You can find it here. It's alarming to me because Lou from Littleton is the most delusional Denver sports fan in the metro area, which is plenty obvious if you listened to him when he was on KOA or right now on KKFN. He's pretty pissed. Think about this: everyone thinks that Jeff Francis is a premier candidate for Rookie of the Year, but his ERA is 5.37. The reason everyone thinks he's the premier ROY guy is that he has 11 wins, due to top-of-the-league run support. If Chac got that kind of offense to support his outings, I'm damn near positive he'd still be on this team and would be plastered on the side of Coors with the GEN-R logo emblazoned below his face.
2005-08-06T07:14:55.446-07:00Well I missed most of this game with the exception of some of the scoring plays because I was gambling. Heavily. I'm proud to report that I posted a 120% gain on my initial buyin. Shut up. So what if that totals to eleven dollars from a five dollar starting bet. You've got to start somewhere. The best part is that I sat down to catch the ninth and the Rockies take the lead.
2005-08-05T06:39:13.023-07:00Clint Hurdle has avoided overreactive behavior in the 2005 season. With a team that's started more rookies than any other club by a gigantic margin, how could anyone do anything else? Everyone knows that the players are trying their best, so what's left to do other than steadfastly bouncing a ball against the concrete dugout floor?There are some instances when Hurdle needs to shed the down-and-out mentality, and think like the manager of a contending team. He finally got around to doing that recently when he gave Luis Gonzalez the starting nod over the light-hitting and mediocre-fielding second bagger Aaron Miles. His very high average with runners in scoring position notwithstanding, Aaron Miles' power statistics were virtually nonexistent, and his OBP was essentially the same as his batting average. Think what you will about the nerdy, number-crunching Sabermetricians and their theories, but even the most traditional baseball man will not hesitate to say that a leadoff hitter needs to work the count. A leadoff man that performs his duties will make the pitcher toss a few and get on base, providing his teammates with an opportunity to see the pitcher's stuff and setting the table for the hitters that follow him. While Gonzalez strikes out more and has a slightly worse average than Miles, he also has an OBP that dwarfs Miles' and power that intrigues everyone.So Hurdle made the right call.It's time for another.Danny Ardoin, who absolutely tore up the PCL, has been exactly what everyone expected. A light-hitting catcher who can catch and throw with the best of them; he is the second coming of Henry Blanco. For a while, the change of pace was entirely appropriate. The pitching staff needed stability and experience behind the plate, and the Rockies had to start controlling the running game. Plus, the Rockies theoretical starting catcher, J.D. Closser, was hitting about .150 and runners were treating the bases like a track. It's time to let J.D. out of the doghouse. Danny Ardoin is not a long term solution, and Closser, despite his abysmal batting average, posted very respectable OBPs in almost every month except April. Especially during this hot streak that the Indiana native has been on, the skipper ought to give Closser the starting nod again. With his newfound power supply complementing his already good OBP, J.D. is better than ever. That unequivocal confidence Hurdle placed in the young backstop for the first few months of the season needs to be brought back; Closser deserves another shot.***~Jeff Pickler's stats are pretty darn impressive. He should get a big league audition, even if it means taking a bit of time away from Luis Gonzalez.~The Rox will take on the D-Backs today. When the season was only an infant, Diamondback management looked like a bunch of geniuses. Their high priced acquisitions of Sean Green and Troy Glaus were producing like nobody would've thought(they still are doing pretty well), and pitching was great. Well, once the Snakes started taking on real teams (anyone outside of the N.L. West), their true worth was revealed. Yet another mediocre N.L. West team. Royce Clayton looks like he was a one-year wonder at Colorado, with little production in the "so damn hot" state. Even with the up-and-coming star Chad Tracy at third, there just isn't enough hitting to compensate for their lack of pitching. Russ Ortiz, handed a fat and pretty much consensually regarded (by everyone in the world except the Diamondbacks management squad) as stupid contract, has not performed up to his 7.3 million dollar salary. Rockies fans can address their letters of "Nyah-Nyah! Told'ya so! It's not just Coors that ruins pitchers!" toArizona Diamondbacks 401 East Jefferson Street Phoenix, AZ 85001. [...]
2005-08-04T06:20:46.380-07:00So I forgot to post this on the blogotron for a while, but last week I saw a ESPN Classic deal on Kirk Gibson's famed dinger, and the best part about it was that you can see brakelights in the picture of the ball going over the right field fence. Oh Dodger fans with their early departures.
2005-08-03T21:48:00.510-07:00Hey folks, I stumbled upon a forum while Alou was making one of his legendarily frequent pitching changes.
2005-08-03T06:34:33.686-07:00According to Tracy Ringolsby, Luis Gonzalez is now the Rockies' starting second baseman. Sweet."SECOND THOUGHT: Luis Gonzalez has been the Rockies' super sub since joining the team a year ago. Now Hurdle wants to see if Gonzalez might even be better. Gonzalez is going to get a chance serve as the team's everyday second baseman the rest of this season. "Aaron (Miles) has done an admirable job, but we have to see if we have more of an upside with Luis," Hurdle said. "This is another one of the questions we want to answer before the end of the season."In the wake of a series of trades which I didn't like, this mollifies my hatred for the team. Finally Gen-R is being implemented in the one spot that desperately needed it. In honor, I'll repost what was one of my first opinions posted on the blog. By the way, my draft entry took more work than any other one since. I think I was very right about trading Desi immediately, as he was theretofore a superb player. Should've traded him.Sha-Zam!With Clint Barmes' freak injury and Aaron Miles' less freaky injury, a player that has been deserving of playing time has begun to shine. If you don't know who I'm talking about, it's no. 4, Luis Gonzalez. This super-utility guy (he apparently carries something in the area of ten gloves on road trips) has shown that he has the ability to start in the bigs. He has performed admirably in the wake of the Miles injury and will get more playing time with Barmes out too. I personally believe that he should get the starting job at second base over Aaron Miles, given his power numbers. Gonzalez exceeds Miles' numbers in OBP, Slugging %, homers, and has legitimate power to the gaps. It seems to me that in Coors, a ballpark know for its inflated power numbers, every positional player for a team that plays 81 games there ought to have the ability to knock the ball out of the yard; thus, the Rockies should trade Miles or push him into a utility role (especially with Desi Relaford's revival, he should be starting every game too). Aaron Miles' hitting style would be ok in Coors if he drew more walks, but because he doesn't do that, his OBP is almost identical to his average, thereby decreasing his value. Many teams would be glad to have a contact hitting second baseman in Miles, so there would be some value in return. Keeping to the youth movement, Luis Gonzalez is the younger player as well, and thus should get the starting nod.Desi Relaford has shown something as of late as well, and the Rockies need to capitalize on that by trading him (if they are truly committed to the future). A team with two rising middle infield stars (Gonzalez, Barmes) has no room for a utility man that can hit .320. Normally the view would be that Relaford's stats are merely a reflection of Coors field, but he is hitting better on the road than in the thin aired hitter's paradise. Like Miles, Relaford is a contact hitter with little power, but in contrast to Miles, Relaford works the count and walks very often. This makes him acceptable in Coors, however, the Rox should exploit his rising value by trading him and consequently free up space in the infield while acquiring a good prospect.The following playoff-competitive teams are probably interested in a veteran middle infielder hitting .320 (some have players to give in return):Padres (Loretta down, Xavier Nady is a solid prospect)Marlins (Alex Gonzalez is hitting only .278)Mets (Kaz Matsui is no good)Brewers (loaded farm system, starting SS has .182 BA)MarinersTwins (Loaded farm system, may need a veteran to anchor the infield)Yankees (but who would they trade...)Orioles (badly need infield depth)Blue JaysDon't take this as hostility towards either player, I really like Desi Relafo[...]
2005-08-01T16:17:00.690-07:00With the Rockies having an off day, this is a great opportunity to watch one of the best pitchers in the game do his thing. Tune your television to ESPN, 'cause you don't want to miss the A's-Twins game. Santana's pitching. In the event that you're getting the National League game, well, lame. The fact that ESPN "alternative" exists on DirecTV really makes me happy. Woo.
2005-08-01T09:04:18.456-07:00I'm lucky to have my reduced blogging duties coincide with my newfangled eBay escapades, because now I can try to do a better job on both, although the eBay stuff is entirely new so there's no room for improvement/anything to compare my performance to. P.S. Shawn Chacon looks crazy different. I think that in the future, academia will no longer footnote things traditionally, but rather will hyperlink to e-text editions of their sources.***Over the past month, the Rockies have gone from a last place team to being a, well, last place team. The general manager Dan O'Dowd assured his loss-weary constituency that he would only make "good baseball moves," but proved to be as trustworthy as the city of Washington on the whole(and Peter Angelos, who's in that general area). In trying to pull the wool over the eyes over Rockies fans everywhere, O'Dowd and the Monforts seem to have accidentally blinded himself and then stubbed several of his toes. The "baseball moves" were kicked off by trading Preston Wilson's salary (player now included!) to the Nationals for the oft-injured sinkerballer Zach Day and toolsy outfielder J.J. Davis. Day, still a young man at the age of 27 (hey isn't that how old Shawn Chacon is? Stay tuned!), has a good sinker; according to O'Dowd, sinkerball pitchers "profile" better at Coors than other types of pitchers. ZD, like the California vintage bearing his initials, most likely has a shelf life of a couple of years before he starts turning sour. J.J. Davis, once upon a time the eighth overall pick in the MLB draft, has not reached the level many thought he would achieve. His OBP numbers from the minors look like very good batting averages (.342 at AAA Nashville in 2003), but he has power (26 homers in that same PCL season) and is reasonably young at the age of 26. The P-Dub to Washington move was prudent and somewhat wise, and everybody knew it was going to happen. The next trade was with the Oakland A's of Moneyball fame. The Rockies sent former-ace-turned-terrible-pitcher Joe Kennedy and the yang to his yin, former-washup-turned-super-eighth-inning-man Jay Witasick. Joe Kennedy and Jason Jennings battled for the top spot in what was supposed to be the strongest rotation the Rockies have seen since their humble beginnings at Mile High Stadium, and JK Kennedy (Haha, tricked you into giving me a fat contract. I'm not good! i wuz jk lolol) earned the opening day start. He never performed like a number one guy (even a Rockies number one guy) in his second tour of the Majors in a purple-striped uni. There were flashes of brilliance, and he pitched very well in many games save for the six run first/fourth/fifth/sixth inning that he would inevitably surrender in those JK-patented almost-great starts. His four spotless innings per start notwithstanding, Kennedy's ERA was above 7. He was probably doing some collar tugging around the trade deadline. Jay Witasick, the diamond in the inexplicably jewel-filled rough that is the bullpen scrap heap, had performed admirably for the Rockies in 2005. After the first month of the season when the home-grown bullpen deflated any hope of respectability (yes, NL West teams can be respectable), the Rox made some good moves and picked up enough veterans to restore the bullpen to decent, if not above-average status. The bridge from the starter or sixth and seventh inning guy to stellar closer Brian Fuentes was Jay Witasick. His presence in the eighth and extended scoreless stretches allowed the Rockies to hold onto their leads in the rare event that they had one, and kept the Rockies within striking distance if they were down by a couple of runs. The A's sent the Rockies mino[...]
2005-07-31T08:44:40.416-07:00With all of this stuff going on, I'm going to wait until later to do a less angry trade recap. For now, I'm just going to mention some things.
2005-07-30T22:05:19.126-07:00Throughout all of the trade talk and rumors, all of the coverage of what most have called the awful Chacon move, I think we've all felt that something's just not right. And it's probably struck us all by now, the questions we've been dying to ask: Wait a minute, weren't the Rockies building a homemade, Colorado dugout? These kids, who have been pitching in Colorado all of their lives, are the only way to win, right Dan? Apparently not. In a stunning move, Dealin' Dan O'Dowd pulled one right out of Orwell's pocket and asked us all to do a bit of doublethink in a press conference yesterday. The Rocky's Dave Krieger puts it well:
And so the faces keep changing. One day you are part of the building process and the next day you're not. Remember when Chacon and Scott Elarton were part of the grow-'em-at-home plan? These were Colorado kids who had always pitched at altitude.
That was the secret.
For about a minute and a half.
Somebody asked general manager Dan O'Dowd about the homegrown thing and he immediately veered off into his rap about kids the Rockies have drafted. He didn't even remember the grow-'em-at-home plan. No wonder. There have been so many plans.
From Rockies' newest profile: Kiss hope goodbye in Saturday's Rocky
2005-07-29T21:39:04.726-07:00We've been had. We've been absolutely freaking had, folks. Duped, hoodwinked, conned, decieved, et cetera.
2005-07-29T09:40:23.823-07:00In fact, I'm surprised that he hasn't traded Helton yet. I mean, he was just batting near .300 when he got injured, and he had tons of power behind him all season, he's seen all kinds of great pitching. Oh, and there's no way he'll ever fully recover from, gasp, a strained muscle. Not to mention the fact that he's never been seriously injured before, so this one will hit him hard...hrm, now seems like a perfect time to trade him. Why, I'll bet we could get three or four Yankees prospects for him!
2005-07-29T06:10:06.633-07:00Well, then. If you read my earlier post, you know how I feel about trading Shawn Chacon. I said if they trade him, I lose respect for the Rockies organization and their so-called "plan." There is no concievable reason to trade your number one starter of the year for two YANKEES prospects. WE'RE TALKING THE FREAKING YANKEES HERE, PEOPLE. Not exactly the deepest minor league talent pool in the world. I don't understand. I flat out don't understand. I'm normally hesitant to admit that, but I have absolutely no idea why they would do this. Ohhh wait. I just saw this on the intertron:
2005-07-27T19:31:08.566-07:00So there I am, feeling like I need to check my e-mail, in the midst of a 1-1 ballgame. Jamie Wright is pitching well, and the Rockies offense is making solid contact, it's looking like a good game in the making. Then I come back, ask pop what happened, and learned (not to my surprise) that Jamie had given up back-to-back homers. But that's okay, it's just 3-1, and we're good at playing catchup. Plus, I'm hungry and a Quesadilla is calling to me.
2005-07-26T07:34:05.300-07:00The Rockies win on Monday evening came with a black lining. In the 5-3 victory over the Mets, superstar first baseman Todd Helton was running to third base from second, and the 6' 2" face of the Colorado Rockies looked to have tweaked something in his leg as he gingerly lumbered his oversized frame to third. Helton says he will only miss one or two games, but given the Rockies' current place in the standings (in the "IRRELEVANT" column next to the Reds and the D-Rays), the struggling club doesn't need to rehab Helton as quickly as possible; rushing players back from injury tends to breed more of the same troubles in the future.
2005-07-25T08:00:22.786-07:00No posts last weekend. Sorry about that. Looks like I didn't miss much, huh? I actually watched Sunday's game, and Chac looked pretty solid as usual. Why they're trying to trade him, I have no idea.Neifi Perez hit a grand slam in the 10th inning on Sunday night, and who doesn't want an excuse to catch up with what he's doing?(Old school Vlad Guerrero, old school Neifi)Neifi Perez, once upon a time a Rockies shortstop, loves Colorado. According to numerous anecdotes by Drew Goodman and his cohort George Frasier, Perez speaks upon his time in Colorado as wonderful, euphoric, et cetera. This could be because Perez was a Rocky during the period when losses weren't in quartets and when wins weren't one by excruciating one. Also, maybe, just maybe, loyalty isn't dead. A very viable possibility as to the origin of this loyalty is that the Rockies signed Neifi out of the Dominican Republic in 1992. In the country where Sammy Sosa is rumored to have used a milk carton as a glove, the life preserver (Joe Posnanski has a stellar piece about Tony Pena's experience with this in The Best American Sports Writing 2004 (awesome series. They have it for all kinds of writing. Also recommended is the short story edition)) of Major League Baseball, in this case the Rockies, probably is memorable.After being signed as an amateur free agent by the Rockies in 1992, Neifi Perez started his Rockies career. He debuted in the majors four years later on August 31, 1996 and stayed with the club for all of September, starting 17 games in that span. In '97, the then 23 year old short stop started 83 games and saw 313 official big league ABs. He didn't have great power numbers, he didn't have a great OBP, but he would play catcher if it meant seeing more playing time, and thusly he captured the hearts of Denver fans, something that hasn't been done for a long time since.Three and a half years later, Neifi wasn't any more patient at the plate, and was dealt to the KC Royals for Jermaine Dye (Three team deal: Neifi to KC, Dye to Athletics, a mess of "prospects" to the Rox. Oh Jose Ortiz, he was great). On the lower budget Missouri team, Perez performed poorly, his average dipping almost 50 points and his slugging dropping almost 150 points. Neifi simply was not happy. He missed Colorado and he missed the Rockies. After a few years bouncing around the league, sometimes on the NL West San Fran Giants allowing Colorado fans to see him, sometimes on the Cubs, sometimes in the minor leagues, Neifi resurfaced in 2005.Once the face of the Boston Red Sox, Nomar Garciaparra had been traded in mid-2004 to the Cubs in a three team deal that brought Orlando Cabrera to the BoSox and left the Expos with very little. Garciaparra went down with a torn groin early in 2005 and Neifi Perez all of a sudden was the starting shortstop for the Cubs. He's not performing particularly well statistically with a .265 average and barely-above-that OBP, but his propensity for big hits has endeared Neifi to the Chicago population (That's not to say he won't be zealously replaced with someone better at the drop of a hat).It's good to see Neifi around again.[...]
2005-07-22T20:22:18.593-07:00The rollercoaster road Rockies (mostly screaming downhill sections, a few quick rises) pulled off a wonderful victory.