Monday, July 30, 2012

Rox Talk - Week 17

A 1-5 week against the D-Backs and Reds. The Rox currently stand at 37-63 (second half record at 4-11). Seventeen and half games behind the Giants/Dodgers for the division lead in last place. Currently 20-32 at home and 17-31 on the road, the Rox have been outscored by its opponents 564-471 (expected wins is 42 versus historical wins at 47). On pace for 60 wins with 763 runs scored and 914 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs Scored/Runs Against ratio) is 0.84 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential). 

Now that the season is in the trash can and we go back and try to figure out what happened, the "experts" will probably declare that we really shouldn't have expected anything else but a really bad year. Rox rolled the dice on pitching, hoping for some average starts, and basically nothing worked out. I mean when old man Moyer came out of Spring Training as one of our starters we should have waved the white flag immediately. 

The offense has been great. If we had just an average rotation we probably would have had at least had a respectable season but to be frank the starting pitching has been the worse staff in Rox history (which is saying a whole lot because pre-humidor we had terrible staffs). Also Rox pitching is on pace for the worst staff ERA in the history of the game! And the saddest part in all this is that this is when pitching in baseball has been the strongest it has been since the end of the Steroid era. How bad is it comparatively speaking?  At High Heat Stats a few notes on this season's MLB seasonal averages:

1)  Run scoring is the 2nd-lowest value since 1992.  Rox are giving up 5.64 runs a game versus the 4.33 average.

2)  Strikeouts are up to 7.5 per game with walks down to 3.06 per game (lowest since 1968).  Average K/BB ration is 2.43.  Rox ratio is 2.15 overall but the starters are at 2.08.

3)  Hits per game are at 8.65 per game, the lowest value since 1989 and yet our Rox are giving up 10.24 hits per game!

So should we expect (maybe even demand?) changes in the head office? You would think when you send out and create the worse staff in the history of baseball that someone would be looking for a new job but this is the Rox we are talking about. The owner, who earlier this year, claimed that O'Dud was the greatest GM in the game is just clueless and could care less if a winning product is put on the field. Why should he when Coors Field is a cash cow. I mean when the Pirates were in town 2 weeks ago, in a mid week July game, over 40,000 people showed up!  Heck even when we embarrass ourselves when 9 fielders can't even remember how many outs there are in an inning and have to be reminded by the umpire that it is OK to leave the field the Rox manager continues to get a free pass.

As an aside I am also an avid Rapids fan.  In addition to the Rox, their season has been a disappointment as well.  They are currently on a 0-6-0 run in July.  But I will take what the Rapids are trying to do because when I watch them on the pitch they are giving an A effort.  Results might not be there but they care.  Their winless July streak was frustrating as a fan but their passion and desire was there even if wins weren't.  Plus their staff understand our frustration and give honest outlooks.  Look I love our Rox and I think in the end this year would have been more acceptable if the team had just been honest with itself.  The fact that it came up with a lot of BS and made a bunch of excuses just bothers me.  It will be an interesting off season to say the least!

Box Score Bytes - Game 100

- Game 35 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 12-23.  Sanchez's new uniform doesn't appear to make much difference.  Faced 22 batters didn't get out the fifth and got the loss.  Starter's record is now 5-18 with 12 no decisions and bullpen record of 7-5. 

-  Game 100 and Rox are now 37-63. On pace for 102 losses.  After yesterday somebody has to make some hard decisions.  In the bottom of the 5th, Rox reliever Torres strikes out for what was the third out in the inning but at this point all 9 players on the field were completely unaware of that fact.  Rox catcher threw it to the third baseman and only after the umpire related to the clueless Rox that was in fact the last out did the Rox leave the field.  Really?  Rox are not only bad but they have become an embarrassment.  Someone's head should roll for that.  Tracy obviously has lost the clubhouse, the team obviously doesn't care, and basically they are thinking that October 4th can't get here soon enough.  I am getting close to be done with team.  If they can't respect the game and at least try then I'm not bothering to waste my time going to see them...

- Rox lose the season series to the Reds 5-1.  Rox get swept at home again.  Truly amazing how quickly this team has just gotten bad.  Hate to break it to management but in the last 162 games, dating back to around the Ubaldo trade, Rox are 62-100.  For a team of young stars, this baptism by fire had better work otherwise it won't be just a bad 2012 but a bad 2013 too.

- On a positive note, CarGo has hit safely at home for 28 games, two game shy of Walker's 30 game record!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 99

- Game 34 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 12-22.  Friedrich trial by fire continues.  After getting off to an OK start he now finds himself 5-8.  His ERA stands at 6.17 and either the 4 man rotation doesn't suit him or the book is out on him and he needs to make adjustments.  He gave up 7 runs with 55 pitches.  Hopefully all of this is a great learning experience cause otherwise this could be considered a cruel and unusual punishment.  Starter's record is now 5-17 with 12 no decisions and  bullpen record of 7-5.

- Colorado outhits the opposition and still loses.  Just another night of frustrating baseball.

- Hard to believe but this was the first game this season where the Rox surrendered 5 homers.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 98

- Game 33 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 12-21.  Pomeranz continues to be that starter that shows some potential but still is lacking that veteran umph to gut through those rough innings.  He has started 10 games, going 1-6, with an ERA of 4.99.  He has averaged about 5 innings a start.  He went 5.1 yesterday throwing 87 pitches.  In the end I hope this kid finds whatever it is that makes pitchers be good because when all is said and done he will always be tied to our greatest starter, the one we traded away.  Starter's record is now 5-16 with 12 no decisions and  bullpen record of 7-5. 

- At this point I have given up trying to get Troy Renck and anyone else to listen that it isn't Coors Field that is the problem for the Rox pitchers.  Time after time pitchers come in and can tame the beast.  Tonight it was Bronson Arroyo who pitched into the 7th and got the win without giving up a run, despite having an 0-2 record with an 8.84 ERA in three career starts up to this point.  Regardless of the ball park a mature hurler can survive the Beast...something to think about before we trot out a bunch of Rookies next year...

- After the game, Marco Scutaro was traded to the Giants.  After a slow start and Tulo's injury, Marco was a steadying influence.  Batted .271 with 102 hits in 95 games and scored 47 runs, It is too bad the tandem of Scutaro and Tulo never really got to show off.  Good luck and thanks for being a professional.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 97

- Game 32 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 12-20.  Scrap Heap Francis prevents the sweep and pitches a great 6 innings.  He actually started the 7th but then promptly gave up a home run and was shown the showers.    He threw 97 pitches (!) and gave up two runs.  I imagine he got a little more of a leash due to an off day and an extra day's rest.  Starter's record is now 5-15 with 12 no decisions and  bullpen record of 7-5.  What is the secret of Francis?  Stats below show the average for Francis and the combine average for the other starters since the experiment begain.  His stats are fairly comparable to the other average starters with the sole exception being strikes called looking.  For whatever reason what Francis throws deceives or keeps the batter off balance perhaps looking for one pitch but getting something else.

Pitcher IPGS BF K Pitches Strikes Contact Swing K Look K GB FB LD
Francis 42 52 21 3 78 50 27 7 16 9 8 2
Other 102 41 20 3 77 46 28 7 12 7 8 3

- Since Francis was signed on June 9, the Rockies are 8-2 when he starts and 5-25 with everyone else.

- Another nice night for Fowler who collected his 49 career triples for the Rockies, tying Neifi Perez for the franchise record. 

- Rox are 5-6 against the D-Backs, 4-5 against Dodgers, 5-7 against the Padres, and 2-3 against the Giants.  With a 16-21 against NL West opponents I would normally be excited but 2-13 against the AL and 19-26 against the rest of the NL makes it just one of those years...

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 96

- Game 31 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 11-20.  Rox AA prospect, Edwar Cabrera, got his second start of the year and basically showed that he is not ready for the BIGS.  He went 3.1 innings giving up two runs.  Starter's record is now 4-15 with 12 no decisions and a bullpen record of 7-5.

- Rox fought and loss against another lefty.  D-Backs Saunders went seven innings giving up 3 hits, one to reliever Josh Roenicke and two homers to Cuddyer.  Rox are 9-20 against south paws.

- Cuddyer accounted for both runs.  Second time this year he has had multiple homers in one game. Eighth time in his career.  

- If Rox can salvage at least one game in this series then the season series would be 6-5 in favor of the D-Backs.  Not bad considering...

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 95

- Game 30 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 11-19.  New comer Jonathon Sanchez was thrown into the mix going 4 innings giving up 5 runs.  Hmmm jersey changed but same results.  Starter's record is now 4-14 with 12 no decisions and a bullpen record of 7-5.

- Rutledge hit his first career HR and since being called up has had eight extra-base hits along with four singles.  Drafted in the 3rd round in 2010, he is the third member of that draft round to reach the bigs.

- This season just seems like a broken record.  Every game seems to be a carbon copy of what we continue to see.  When will this team find anything to build on?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Rox Talk - Week 16

The Week That Was 
A 2-4 week against the Pirates and Padres. The Rox currently stand at 36-58 (second half record at 3-6). Sixteen and half games behind the Giants for the division lead in last place. Currently 20-29 at home and 16-29 on the road, the Rox have been outscored by its opponents 531-453 (expected wins is 40 versus historical wins at 44). On pace for 62 wins with 781 runs scored and 915 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs Scored/Runs Against ratio) is 0.85 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

As this season progresses, we fans and those that officially cover the team, cross our fingers hoping for some sign of better things to come.  Troy Renck, in his article today at the Post, tries to spin the four man rotation as some progress but as Troy admits for the most part nothing as changed.  Again we like to put a new spin on things, look for something fresh, but when all is said and done this pitching staff is not a quality major league staff.  Too many youngsters, too many injuries, and too many pitchers with profiles that just don't fill the niche that Coors Field demands.  With 68 games remaining I don't think there will be any significant changes.  A few more future pieces and parts will be flown in, given a tryout, and then 2013 talk will begin in earnest.  Hopefully Rox will cast off some salary and receive some future pieces.  Hopefully Tulo and de la Rosa can be healthy again.  Hopefully what we are seeing today will become the seeds that bloom to another playoff run in 2014/15?  Instead of year of the fan they should have just called in GenR2!

As I commented in a previous post this won't go down as one of the better Colorado summers.  It is too bad Rox couldn't make the summer a bit more enjoyable.  I have attended 15 games so far this year.  The team has gone 4-11.  As a fan I love Coors Field and spending any time at the ball yard for me is a relaxing experience.  But this year my joy is just not there.  To make the effort to get to LoDo, find parking, grab a bite to eat, deal with the heat, and then watch a product that frankly is just not fun to watch.  Maybe Terry Frei had a point in his article about us seamheads but I also wonder if management has forgotten some basic tenents of entertainment.  For me there is lack of any personality on this team.  There is no fun.  From the player's perspective maybe fun is lacking when you're on pace for a 100 losses but some teams just have a vibe.  Even when they might not be very good or not compete for a division title you still don't mind watching them play because they a passion that is contagious.  With Tulo out I get nothing from this team.  No scrapiness, no never say die attitude.  Again having knowledge that most nights your are going to have to come from behind and even then still only win 4 out of 10 times maybe they are just done.

Odds and Ends
One of the more disappointing stories on the field this year has certainly been the rise and fall of Jeremy Guthrie.  Brought in to anchor a young staff, provide valuable innings, and to keep the team in games for the 30 or so expected starts.  The Guthrie experiment lasted all of 15 started games and 4 relief appearances.  For a guy who was 47-65 entering the Coors Field Experience he certainly didn't leave with any love loss.  A 1-5 Coors field record with an ERA of 9.50.  He pitched in 9 games, throwing 41.2 innings gave up 67 hits, 46 runs, and 14 homeruns and faced 204 batters.  All in all I can't blame Guthrie.  He seemed like a good guy.  I followed his twitter feed and he generally seemed like a good clubhouse guy and a good community guy.  I think he fit the Rox motif of what is desirable in a player. Unfortunately that is about all that went well.  Falling off his bike pretty much started the collapse.  Rox will add his name to high priced pitchers who couldn't conquer the demons.

The Cardinals supposedly welcomed their 2,000th player to wear the uniform.  Thanks to baseball-reference I was looking at all that have worn the purple pinstripes and the best I can tell is that Brown or Rutledge or Ekstrom were the 460th Rox.  We have a while yet to go...So after 20 years of baseball what is an average Rox?

Starting Pitcher:  2.3 years of service time with a 10-12 record.  An ERA of 5.21.  184.1 innings pitched giving up 115 runs per year and 24 homeruns with 75 walks and 122 strikeouts.  Esmil Rogers is most similar to our average pitcher...
Relief Pitcher:  1.6 years of service time with a 2-2 record.  An ERA of 4.50.  47.0 innings pitched giving up 25 runs per year and 6 homeruns with 19 walks and 39 strikeouts.  Bobby Chouinard is most similar to our average relief pitcher...
Batter:  2.1 years of service time with 151 games played.  A batting average of .283 with 73 runs scored, 133 hits, 26 doubles, 4 triples,  and 16 homeruns with 69 RBIs.  10 stolen bases with 47 walks and 87 strikeouts.  Jeromy Burnitz is most similar to our average batter.

Box Score Bytes - Game 94

- Game 29 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 11-18.  Friedrich pitched through 5 innings.  Threw 82 pitches and left with a tie game.  Starter's record is now 4-13 with 12 no decisions and a bullpen record of 7-5.

- Another series loss.  San Diego leads the season series 7-5.  Tough as Padres are one of the few teams Rox have been able to beat on a consistent basis.  

- Pacheco got his first start behind the plate due to mounting injuries.  While this season will be looked upon as the collapse at the mound, injuries have also played a significant part with the havoc it can play with lineup consistency.  

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 93

- Game 28 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 11-17.  Francis gets through 5 innings.  Threw 80 pitches and at least gives the team a chance.  For all the talk of the 4 man rotation, Francis has probably been the most consistent.  He has had 2-1 record in seven games.   He has gone 5 innings at least in every start.  Of the 4 no decisions the team has gone on to win four times.  So since the start of this experiment Francis has been a part of over half the team's wins.  Starter's record is now 4-13 with 11 no decisions and a bullpen record of 7-4.

- Hopefully in a couple of years when we look back at this season and have found some success, the cornerstone of success will be Pacheco.  He has had a quietly good season.  He is batting .306 and based on his teammates he is batting beyond his years.  Now whether this continues is anyone's guess but for the Rox I hope they find some diamonds this year.

- Bullpen pitched seven innings and allowed only one run.  Unbelievable the pen has any left after 93 games but they continue to be a bright spot.

- At least Rox didn't get beat by Kip Wells for the second time this year...

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 92

- Game 27 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 10-17.  Pomeranz struggles through 3 innings.  Throws 53 pitches and gives up 7 runs.  For some the 4 man rotation is not providing the required recovery that most pitchers expect.  As fate would have it Rox traded one disappointment for another.  Sending Guthrie to KC and receiving Sanchez in return.  Guthrie sees the light and Sanchez probably feels he has gone from the frying pan to the fire.  Starter's record is now 4-13 with 10 no decisions and a bullpen record of 6-4.

- Tough night all around for team that is struggling and also has to hear about a far worse struggle with the shootings that took place the night before.  With the fires, the shootings, and the Rox it can be fair to say that this Colorado summer will not be remembered fondly.  With the real world around us maybe we make too much of the Rox and their miserable team.  In the context of all things it is really irreverent what our favorite team does.  While we do pay a part in all of this when it comes down to it, it's the Monforts and company that are paying out over $85 million for a team on pace for 100 losses.  Why should we really care other than Colorado deserves better and could use a nice diversion this Summer with the losses we have had.  Nice not to have your local team add to those losses.

- On the bright side, Rox lone All Star did have a grand slam, the second of his career.

- How unlucky are the Rox?  On a night when opposition commits 3 errors we still lose...

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 91

- Game 26 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 10-16.  Why am I still here Guthrie goes 2.2 innings. Throws 68 pitches and gives up 6 runs (4 earned).  Offense meanwhile gave him a 5 run cushion to work with.  Even with that he couldn't pitch and at this rate Rox will just release Guthrie.  Any trade value is nonexistent at this point.  Much like the Royals dumping Sanchez, Rox will just have to eat crow and dump his salary.  Starter's record is now 4-12 with 10 no decisions and a bullpen record of 6-4.

- Radio broadcast mentioned how in Rox 56 losses this year they have scored at least 5 runs in 18 or so of them.  Basically they were saying the offense has at least given the Rox a chance but the utter dismal failure of our starting pitching can't even make that hold up.  I looked at baseball reference this evening and in game outcomes for teams that win the average runs scored is (8080 runs/1355 games) 5.96 runs.  In losses it is (3653 runs/1355 games) 2.69.  So Rox have lost 8 games when scoring 6 or more runs.  They have lost another 9 games when scoring at least 5 runs.  They are 26-17 when the offense scores at least 5 runs.  If our pitchers had a heartbeat we'd probably at least be around .500 and respectable...

- This marks the 17th series this season where we have won only one game.  In 10 of these series Rox won the first game.

- Barmes is batting like .205 and yet against Rox he is superman.  Nothing like a player scorned from his old team

- Fowler hit his second game opening homer this year, third of his career.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 90

- Game 25 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 10-15. Friedrich goes 4.2 innings. Throws 83 pitches. Pitches great for four innings then loses it all in the 5th with two walks.  Starter's record is now 4-12 with 9 no decisions and a bullpen record of 6-3.

- First game I've been to in a while and I have to believe Colorado is the home of the Anti-Fan.  What I mean by this is as the team gets worse more people show up.  Rox now sit 20 games under .500 and yet 42,574 fans showed up to watch.  Now if the Dodgers or Braves were in town I could understand but I don't think there are that many Pittsburgh fans living in Denver.  I understand the Steeler following but last time I checked the Pirates hadn't had a winning season in 20 years.  It was a beautiful night for baseball but how exactly are we going to get change if people continue to come out in droves?  What exactly are we showing up for?

- Rox get beat by a guy who entered with a 4-10 record.  Of course Rox helped out by leaving the bases loaded three times, leaving 13 men on base, and not having a hit with runner's in scoring position.

- Rox got another triple as Rutledge got his first.  Rox now have 34 triples with 12 Rox each having at least one...

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 89

- Game 24 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 10-14. Francis goes 5.0 innings. Throws 72 pitches. Gives up 1 run and leaves with a win.  If it wasn't for a rain delay in the Top of the ninth inning which then led to a game tying homer, Francis might have gotten the win.  By the way since the experiment begin the team record is 10-14 but the starter's record is 4- 11 with 9 no decisions and a bullpen record of 6-3.

- Fowler saves the game with a great grab in center to rob an extra base hit and a sacrifice fly to deep center to score the winning run.  A nice July so far for Rox center fielder.  Too bad Rox are 19 games below .500.

- Gotta love the umpires who stop a game in the Top of the Ninth inning with two runners on and one out.  Have to wonder why it even went to a 9th if the weather was like it was.  Amazing with one pitch after the delay Pirates hit a game tying homer.  Gotta love baseball!

- Interesting to see what happens when Helton comes off the DL...Tracy hasn't had to juggle the lineup with Colvin getting his starts.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Rox Talk - Week 15

The Week That Was 
A 1-2 week against the Phillies. The Rox currently stand at 34-54 (second half record at 1-2). Fourteen and half games behind the Giants for the division lead in last place. Currently 19-27 at home and 15-27 on the road, the Rox have been outscored by its opponents 494-425 (expected wins is 38 versus historical wins at 41). On pace for 63 wins with 782 runs scored and 909 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs Scored/Runs Against ratio) is 0.86 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 88

- Game 23 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 9-14. Pomeranz goes 5.0 IP. Throws 80 pitches. Gave up 5 runs.  Almost had a 5 x 5 day.  Also gave up 5 hits and 5 strikeouts.

- After Rutledge's awesome debut he has now gone 0-6.

- Interesting how everyone but Rox personnel seem to have figured out what it takes to pitch at Coors.  CJ Wilson had an interesting take.  Huston Street has a take.  O'Dowd's had 13 years and hasn't figured it simple take is good pitching can conquer Coors...

- Another series loss, another series home loss, and Rox lose a series to team that hadn't won a series since Phillies last beat the Rox.

- Fowler is batting .464 (13 for 28) over seven games since July 5.  Once again making his late Summer impression.  Wonder how much money he and Scott Boras will take from a franchise that simply needs pitching?

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 87

- Game 22 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 9-13. Guthrie goes 4.2 IP. Throws 76 pitches. Gave up 4 runs and got his 9th lost of the year.  Guthrie's last win was May 31!  Maybe what Rox need is two GMs.  O'Dowd can only trade for position players and GM #2 worries about pitchers.  Show me one good starting pitching acquisition that O'Dowd has accomplished?

- Amazing to think how other team pitchers waltz in throw an easy 7-8 innings and go away with win.  Phillies aren't exactly the best in the NL East and yet they seem to get the job done.  Unbelievable how bare our cupboards are with almost no MLB pitching prospect.

- Rox make it close in the 8th but can't seem to keep it close.  Made Papelbon 9th a bit easier.  Still remember that Boston game a few years back when I think Giambi just rocked his world.  This year, not so much...

Box Score Bytes - Game 86

- Game 21 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 9-12. Friedrich goes 6.0 IP. Throws 82 pitches. Left the game with a win and Rox relief corp of Belisle, Brothers, and Roenicke held it for Friedrich's 5th win.

- Youth movement began.  Helton goes on DL.  Rox call up Mike Ekstrom, RHP, and Josh Rutledge for the second half.

- Sounding like a wedding, Rutledge goes with something borrowed (shoes, gloves, and bat) and has a nice debut going 2-2 with two RBIs, sacrifice, and stolen base.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 85

- Game 20 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 8-12.  Guthrie goes 6.0 IP.  Throws 83 pitches.  Left the game with a loss but Rox came back and got him a no decision.  Nice relief performance and a nice way to end the first half.  With Guthrie on display I will find it hard to believe he will be pitching for the Rox much longer.  Guthrie has a 3.70 ERA his demotion and rebirth. It was 7.02 before.

- Nats were 40-2 leading after seven before yesterdays loss.

- Rockies won their first series in over a month and had their second comeback win of the season.

- EY Jr had gone 179 games without a homer before getting a dinger.

Rox Talk - Week 14

The Week That Was
A 3-4 week against the Cardinals and Nationals. The Rox currently stand at 33-52.  Thirteen games behind the Dodgers for the division lead in last place. Currently 18-25 at home and 15-27 on the road, the Rox have been outscored by its opponents 479-413 (expected wins is 37 versus historical wins at 40). On pace for 63 wins with 787 runs scored and 913 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs Scored/Runs Against ratio) is 0.86 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

Well there is your first half.  Third worst winning percentage in 20 years.  Welcome to the Year of the Fan!  President Monfort sent a message to season ticket holders and he plainly says, "this is not the start that we had hoped for."  He goes on to say that he thinks, "Our commitment to winning has been questioned."  You think Mr Monfort?  What was your first clue?  Two years ago we supposedly had a team built to win its first division title and Rox failed.  Last year they were supposed to be competitive and maybe sneak into the playoffs and Rox failed.  Meanwhile last year they also threw away their best pitcher ever so they could take in a bunch of young pitchers to overcome years of poor drafts.  Furthermore this year, you threw out the mantra that the team needed "quality" people so Rox brought in a lot of aging veterans with the ideal that "spirit" was going to will this team to win.  So three years after greatest team run with two play off berths in three years, our Rox find themselves in last place with supposedly a core that should lead us to our next playoff run.  So Monfort indicates "we know where our weaknesses lie and have challenged everyone in the organization to get this fixed!"  Nice pep talk Dick, but I want more than words, I want more than Ra Ra.  Frankly my loyalty is waning.  I don't see what your rosy view sees.  Sure we have a quality and relatively young stars in CarGo and Tulo.  It's a great pair to build a team around but we've been down this road before with wasting of Helton and Walker's careers because we had no mound presence.  Pitching wins Dick.  Forget bats, those will be easy to find, get arms, quick because your young stars will start aging pretty quickly!

Second Half
Rox have 77 games to prove my loyalty for next year (and my checkbook).  What it seems to me is that a lot of the division team leaders this year had positive second halves to their second half last year.

LA Dodgers (.509 all year, 2011) 41-28 in second half (.540 this year)
Pittsburgh  (.444 all year, 2011) 25-47 although they were 47-43 at the break (.565 this year)
Washington (.497 all year, 2011) 34-35 (.590 this year)
Chicago White Sox (.488 all year, 2011) 35-35 (.553 this year)

So while above is not entirely conclusive (thanks Pirates) it would suggest that playing at least 0.500 ball the rest of the way might be a way to show that we theoretically could be competitive next season.  So what would be a respectable finish? If Rox went 39-38, they would finish 72-90.  Not a great year but not a 100 losses.

I surely hope that Monfort it looking at his weaknesses and decides where he wants to be in 2013.  I believe the following should be done:

1) Rosario get at least 60 starts.
2) Colvin plays everyday.
3) Helton sits a whole lot more
4) Good bye Giambi, Hernandez, Scutaro, and Guthrie (maybe even Cuddyer)
5) Bring up every minor league player available and who was planned to possibly be in the league next year. No time like the present to get these guys at bats.
6) Keep up the 4 man rotation, can't hurt and maybe salvage some of these young arms
7) Go in a new direction with management...we need some new blood.  Nothing personal with O'Dowd but he has had his chances and as not been effective.  Change can be good
8) We might potentially have the first draft pick next year so bringing in fresh set of eyes.  Look at one number one drafts did for the Nats.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 84

- Game 19 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 7-12.  Francis goes 5.0 IP.  Throws 77 pitches.  Left the game tied but with two men on.  Bullpen couldn't hold on and that was the game.

- Rox had four errors which probably didn't help either

- Rox have lost six of eight and totaled 14 runs in their last seven games.

- Dex had three of the Rox six hits.  Why does it seem Dex plays OK when there isn't reason to?  Where was he in June?

Friday, July 6, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 83

- Game 18 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 7-11.  Pomeranz pitched probably the best Rox game of the year.  He pitched 6.1 innings, threw 81 pitches, , allowed one hit, and had a game score of 75.  Bullpen held together, Rox won, and Pomeranz got his first win.

- In just one of those baseball quirks this was the third game in which Rox offense saw 153 pitches...go figure

- Tyler Colvin hit two home runs off of Stephen Strasburg. First batter ever to do that.  Rox beat Strasburg for the second time and he only has 4 losses.

Box Score Bytes - Game 82

- Game 17 of the Great Tracy Experiment (or maybe yet the Great Train Wreck?): Record 6-11.  Hey on the bright side the record since starting this experiment is better than before we started it!    At this point I would say that the book is out on Friedrich.  Crafty lefty started with a fairly good record (4-2) but has lost his last 6 decisions.  Went 4.1 innings last night, threw 89 pitches (?, what happened to the 75 pitch limit), and got the lost.  Gave six runs and that was the ballgame.

- Cardinals have Rox number has they have taken 11 of the last 14 games.  Must be the Holliday Curse...

- Part of what makes this year so maddeningly is that the hot and cold nature of our offense.  At times we are beast and at times we are not so much.  In the last 6 games Rox have scored a whooping 13 runs.  If we can't score runs that just makes our pitching that much worse...

-  Of the nine runs Rox scored in the series, Colvin had three homers and knocked in 7 of those runs.  Can we clone Colvin?

- ESPN has a nice up front look see at the underlying numbers...this is so much our season...

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 81

- Game 16 of the Great Tracy Experiment (or maybe yet the Great Train Wreck?): Record 6-10.  Guthrie got a start breaking up the 4 man rotation.  Getting the start probably due to possible trade considerations for teams looking for a durable starter as well as some lingering aches and pains from the other 4 starters.  Guthrie went 6 innings, threw 84 pitches and got the lost.  On the bright side didn't give up a home run and kept the team in striking distance...

- In regards to homers Rox continue to pad other team's offense totals including home runs.  Rox lead (or suck the most) and have given up the most homers (108) in the MLB next to Toronto (107) and Minnesota (106).  Looking at the ESPN stat page an even more stat jumps out and that is total bases.  Rox have given up 1410 bases with the next team, Minnesota, sitting at 1278!

- Maybe we should keep Guthrie around for his pinch hitting and base running?  He singled in the fifth and managed the Rox only RBI for the night.  It was his first career RBI. Rox actually out hit the Cardinals 10-9 but couldn't manage more than one runner across the plate.

- CarGo has a 12 game hit streak. Longest by a Rox this year.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 80

- Game 15 of the Great Tracy Experiment (or maybe yet the Great Train Wreck?): Record 6-9.  Francis continues to thrive in the Experiment.  He went 5 innings with 77 pitches and got a win! The bullpen with Roenicke, Brothers, Belisle, and Betancourt held the lead and got the save with 4 innings of 4 hit ball...whew!

- Colvin's three run dinger was just enough and Rox won 3-2.  Sometimes one hit does make the difference.  Now if only O'Dowd could steal a few pitchers like he has done with trades for CarGo and Colvin.  He is currently batting .358 in his last 18 games with 7 homers and 22 RBIs.  It is a young man's game Mr Helton.

- I don't mean to pile on Helton but when is it time to say goodbye to a figure head on your Mt Rushmore of Rox?  I feel like a terrible fan but to be honest in two years if this team is going to win again it isn't going to be because of Todd...with this as a throw away season we need to play the future.

- Francis got franchise win 57 moving him past U-Ball and one behind second in Jennings.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 79

- Game 14 of the Great Tracy Experiment (or maybe yet the Great Train Wreck?): Record 5-9.  Outman got his chance (?) to try and prove he belonged in the rotation.   Unfortunately it took him 70 pitches to get through three innings and my guess he will be pitching in Colorado Springs trying to "find himself."  Chatwood returned from injury, pitched 2.1 innings gave up four runs and got the lost.

- Rosario hit his third homer in as many days.  He leads all NL catcher's with 14.  Strong Rookie of the Year consideration assuming writer's would give it to someone playing for a dog of a team...

- Tidbit from the radio broadcast 6 of the 9 runs scored by St Louis were accomplished without a hit.  When things are going bad you just can't catch a break!

- Helton missed his second game due to hip soreness.  Is this the beginning of the end for our Rox Star?

Rox Talk - Week 13

The Week That Was
A 3-4 week against the Nationals and Padres. The Rox currently stand at 30-48.  Fourteen games behind the Giants for the division lead in fourth place. Currently 18-25 at home and 12-23 on the road, the Rox have been outscored by its opponents 450-394 (expected wins is 34 versus historical wins at 37). On pace for 62 wins with 818 runs scored and 935 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs Scored/Runs Against ratio) is 0.88 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

'Nuff Said
Rockies 4-man paired rotation experiment isn't really bad per se - it's just that lousy pitchers are lousy. — Dan Szymborski (@DSzymborski) July 3, 2012

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Box Score Bytes - Game 78

- It's come to this...Kip Wells, who had been toiling in the minors until recently, threw 7 shut out innings in yesterday's victory at Coors.

- Game 13 of the Great Tracy Experiment: Record 5-8.  Pomeranz returned from exile to the mix today (although I wonder if he doesn't wish he was still in the Cleveland system after this debacle?) and threw 80 pitches in six innings and got a lost due to Rox inability to hit a washed up, out of baseball starter from San Diego.  Pomeranz is now 0-3

- CarGo was named to his first All-Star team as a reserve.