2016 Record: 75-87
2016 Finish: 20th in MLB, 9th in NL
2016 in Review
Do you know who was the 45th overall pick of the 2011 MLB Draft? No? Okay, let’s play a game. I’ll give you some clues, and we’ll see if you can still guess. This person did not win the Rookie of the Year in 2016, that would be Michael Fulmer, who was picked 44th. This person hit .272 smacking 27 home runs in 2016, despite only playing in 97 games. This guy put up a WAR of 3.1, which ranked him 6th among Rockies players. This guy came on the scene and filled a hole left by Troy Tulowitzki and Jose Reyes. Did that give it away? FINE. It’s Trevor Story.
If Trevor Story had not gotten injured this season, he’s the rookie of the year in my book. Corey Seager had a great year, and I’m gonna let you finish, but Trevor Story had a great year too. In the 15 games Story played in after the All-Star break, he hit .340 and socked 6 round-trippers. In his first full month in Bigs, Story hit 10 homers, 6 of them coming in his first 4 games.
Needless to say, Trevor Story is going to be a big piece of the Rockies offense in the upcoming years. One thing he does is bridges the gap from Charlie Blackmon to Carlos Gonzalez and Nolan Arenado, batting in the number 2 spot. With a healthy Story in the lineup, the Rockies 1-5 hitters are a potent and powerful onslaught for any opposing pitcher to face. That’s how the Rockies can win, by suffocating visiting teams with their offense, and Story is going to be a big part of that.
Defense. It’s what wins championships. It’s also something you cannot skimp on when you play in a stadium that magnifies your offensive prowess. The fact that the Rockies came in 4th for most errors committed in 2016 is not great. You have to keep those guys off the basepaths if you want to win games. You can’t hand scoring opportunities to the other team on a regular basis. That’s not how you win championships.
Bud Black sat out the 2016 season. For the first time in over 15 years Bud didn’t have a uniform to put on. There was a chance he was going to put on a Nationals jersey for Spring Training, but that didn’t quite materialize the way Bud thought it would.
Bud Black was the number one choice for the Manager position in the Nation’s capital. Everything was all but signed until the Nationals learned that Dusty Baker was interested. Yeah. I know. So rude. The Nationals and Bud Black even went ahead and announced the fact that it was essentially a done deal. Oops. The Nationals offer Bud a one year deal for $1.6 million dollars. Bud wanted at least two years, and more money. $1.6 Million dollars might sound like a fuck ton of money, and that’s because it is, but for a Manager in the Majors, that’s nothing. So Bud was like, NAH, and bounced. Two days later, Dusty Bake shows up and gets a two year deal worth $4 million dollars with incentives.
If you’re Bud Black, it would seem like you just got the raw end of the deal. Sure, but let’s also consider that the Nationals are coming off of firing Matt Williams THE YEAR AFTER HE WON NATIONAL LEAGUE MANAGER OF THE YEAR. So maybe this isn’t the best situation to manage in. The Nationals obviously want to control the Managerial position a lot more than most teams. Dusty Baker allowed them to do that. They still lost in the first round.
So Bud sits out this whole season and two manager positions open up; one in Arizona and one in Colorado.
Bud Black signing on as the Rockies manager is the best signing of the 2017 offseason. He is exactly what the doctor ordered, and Walt Weiss left Colorado with a strong offense and young pitching. Bud Black was the pitching coach for the Anaheim Angels at the start of the new millennium, eventually winning a World Series Ring with the club. Black was able to turn the Angels pitching staff around, taking them from the bottom half of the league to being a top 5 pitching staff.
San Diego hired Bud Black for the 2007 season, and the pitching success continued, breaking the top 5 pitching staffs 5 times in his 8 years there. That’s what the Rockies need, a former pitcher taking the reigns of a staff pitching in the most hitter friendly park of all time. The offense is there and the pitching potential is there as well. The Rockies starters are young and if you’re a Rockies fan, you have to realize just how bright the future is. Get some sunglasses, Denver. You’re gonna need them.