The Week That Was
A 4-3 week against the Pirates and Cubs. The Rox currently stand at 55-50. Seven games back from division leading San Diego in third place and five and half games behind in the Wild Card chase. Currently 35-19 at home and 20-31 on the road, the Rox have outscored its opponents 509-465 (expected wins is 57 versus historical wins at 49). On pace for 85 wins with 785 runs scored and 717 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs scored/Runs Against ratio) is 1.09 (>1.16 indicates high playoff potential).
The hangover from the dismal road trip held its grip for the first two games at home this past week. Losing two to the road awful Pirates didn't help matters but Rox got healthy against the Cubs. Wacky series with the Cubs. On Friday night, the Rox scored 12 runs in the 8th, hitting 11 consecutive hits and turning a 5-2 nail biter to a 17-2 laugher. Then on Saturday after giving up the lead in the 8th, CarGo comes in and hits a monster shot in the right field upper deck (only 29th time it has happened) to lift the Rox to a win and becoming the 6th Rox to hit for a cycle (Note: Tulo did the same thing to the Cubs last year!). So with the trade deadline pass the Rox have two months to get it together and make a run. It won't be easy as the Rox sit 3rd in the division and are behind two other teams in the Wild Card.
Another deadline and the Rox management once again surveyed the market and decided that standing pat was the right thing to do? Kizla, which I must admit that I am frightened that I agree with him so much lately, finds that the Colorado baseball fans don't hold Rox management to the same set of standards as they do with the rest of the Colorado sports scene. While I agree that Rox could use some constructive criticism at times I do think they made the right decision not trading the farm for a rental player. While the rest of the division were making deals, Rox found themselves once again looking in the window wishing they could be part of the deal making. Ultimately though there just wasn't enough out there (really don't think Dunn was the answer) and with next years questions especially with Helton; created a situation where the Rox just couldn't deal.
Rumors had the Rox trying to deal Cook and Hawpe, two players who have become high priced old men. Baseball can be cruel game when your talents no longer match your salary which tends to happen when you reach your late 20s and talent has passed you by. Cook, Rox all time win leaders, is the second highest paid Rox and has only 4 wins. Of course the highest paid Rox is trying to find his legs in Cheyenne and with real doubts, the Rox couldn't release Hawpe, needing a younger 1B next year possibly.
As the graph of total bases shows above, the Rox really lag with big bats in the middle of the lineup (hmmm CarGo, Helton, Hawpe anyone?). It would have been nice to find something but I really don't think there was much out there. Rox offense at times has shown some real potential. Unfortunately a 2-9 road trip with an anemic offense is the counter to this argument. With that said what can we expect with 57 games remaining? Or will the apathy continue to reign in the Mile High baseball world?