With just hours to go until the trade deadline, all the talk today will be about who's coming and going to new teams. Odds are the Colorado Rockies won't be very busy today, but you never know. Whether deals are made isn't really the point, though, the point is that deals should be made. The offseason is much more likely for these moves for the Rockies, but there are some guys the team absolutely needs to keep.
First and foremost on that list is Nolan Arenado. The Gold Glove award winner is on the brink of stardom if he picks it up at the plate just a little bit. The look, the personality, the flash, and most importantly the game to back it all up – he has everything needed to be the next superstar for the Rockies.
Staying in the infield, Justin Morneau and DJ LeMahieu need to stay put. Together they anchor one of the best defensive right sides in the game, and when you want pitchers to induce ground balls, that defense is invaluable. Morneau's bat has been revitalized since donning the purple and black, and he could still put up big numbers for the next couple of years. DJ's bat is less impressive than Morneau's, true, but he consistently puts balls in play and is a prototype eight-hole hitter.
Moving on to the outfield now, and the list is missing a couple of familiar names. Charlie Blackmon has been fantastic in the field and at the dish since he started getting consistent playing time last year. He is already 28 years old, but that shouldn't worry the Rockies any moving forward. The other outfielder they must keep their hands on is Corey Dickerson. The 25 year old left fielder is hitting .328 this year and has an OPS of .976. His lumber will keep him in the lineup and will help the Rockies win ball games next year.
The biggest bit of trouble for the Rockies in their history has been pitchers, and this season is no different. Jorge De La Rosa has been great this year, but he's 33 and getting interest from other teams in the trade market. It would be surprising if he's traded, but if offered a good-sized contract by a contender when he's a free agent this winter, don't be surprised if he signs on the dotted line.
So, on the the pitchers still under team control. Brett Anderson has a $12 million team option that should be picked up as soon as the Rockies are eligible to do so. Over his last three games, Anderson has thrown 20.1 innings, giving up 17 hits, 3 runs and 5 walks while striking out 18. That's an ERA of 1.33. Impressive for any three game stretch, but all the more impressive for a Rockies pitcher this year. He most certainly should be back next year. As should Jordan Lyles and Tyler Chatwood. Both guys have been consistent in their respective times with the Rockies with the only concern really their health. But since both guys don't have enough service time to qualify for arbitration, they'll be awfully cheap to bring back.
In the second half of the season, the worst part of the Rockies team has been the bullpen. You get an overwhelming sense of dread whenever Walt Weiss goes to bring a reliever in, and for that reason, should be torn down and mostly replaced. Even though he was credited with a blown save Wednesday, the only lock to come back should be Tommy Kahnle. In his rookie season, he has played well, posting a sub 3 ERA.
That's it. Those nine guys are the only players the Rockies, no matter what, have to bring back next season.
You may have noticed the Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez were nowhere to be found here. And that's the point.
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Tags: Baseball, Brett Anderson, Charlie Blackmon, Colorado, Colorado Rockies, Corey Dickerson, DJ LeMahieu, Jordan Lyles, Justin Morneau, MLB, Nolan Arenado, Tommy Kahnle, Tyler Chatwood
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