Rockies Roster Becoming More Clear

It should be the final off season post before Opening Day on April 3rd in Milwaukee.  The roster crunch time is two weeks from now.  Injuries, thanks to BobinWV, has been a factor in the competition to determine who gets on the plane to Milwaukee.  The major questions when ST started were the back end of rotation, bullpen, and bench players.

Rotation:  Jon Gray is the clear choice to be #1.  If BB decides to go with alternating right-left pitchers, then Tyler Anderson will be #2 and Chatty will be #3.  With the unfortunate return of the cancer to Chettis, it left two rotation spots open for competition.  Kyle Freeland, Agbayani’s favorite dark horse, is separating himself from the field and likely will be slotted #4 as he is a southpaw.  Roster space will have to be opened to make room to add Freeland.  Probably Rayon Gonzalez to the 60-day DL.  BB made it clear that experience in AAA or MLB is NOT a factor.  That allows Antonio Senzatela to be considered a candidate.  German Marquez and Jeff Hoffman were the other candidates.  Hoffman has yet to throw more than two innings in a Cactus League game.  Chris Rusin was practically automatic except for his injury and he should be ready early April, but not in the rotation.  Marquez has been knocked around a little bit.

Bullpen:  Greg Holland, Mike Dunn, Otto, Jake McGee, and Jordan Lyles are locked into five of the eight available BP slots.  Gopherg is having a good spring while Carlos Estevez is having troublesome spring.  I believe one long relief spot will go to Chris Rusin (if ready) or either one of Marquez and Hoffman.  Jason Motte and Chad Qualls should be packing up and sent home.  Jairo Diaz should be ready by mid to late May.  Qualls may start the season on the DL while Motte might be a place holder until Rusin comes back.

First base:  It’s obvious Mark Reynolds will start until Ian Desmond comes back.  Jordan Patterson and Stephen Cardullo can play both OF and 1B.  BB put Pat Valaika and Cristhian Adames at first base in practice.  BB is looking for versatility at all of the infield positions.  Alexi Amarista has a cheap guaranteed contract and is having a real bad spring until today when he went 3 for 3.  BB clearly likes Valaika and Adames for their power and bats from the right hand side.

Second base:  DJLM

Shortstop:  Trevor Story

Third base:  perennial all-star and MVP candidate Nolan Arenado

Catcher:  With Tom Murphy sidelined until late April, Dustin Garneau and Tony Wolters will split the duty behind the dish.

Outfield:  Geraldo Parra, Chuck_Nazty, and CarGo will be the starters to open the season.  David Dahl is due for a return sometimes in April.  That opened the door for Chris Denorfia to be the fourth outfielder.  Again roster space will have to be created to make room for Denorfia as well as Reynolds.   Patterson or Cardullo may be the fifth outfielder as they can also play first base.  Raimel Tapia will probably start the year in Albuquerque so he can play everyday.

The difference this year is having depth that we did not have in the past to plug in the injuries.  This spring training has been a great test of the Rockies depth.  I am interested to see who will be in the Albuquerque rotation as they may be formidable.  Hoffman, Marquez, Yency Almonte, Sam Howard, Shane Carle?

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EdtheUmp
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EdtheUmp

Fellas and gals…
had a great time with RMH this spring during his annual visit to Salt River Fields.
I saw Jon Gray’s last start on Sunday. VERY solid outing to say the least. I’m getting fired up.

Agbayani
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Agbayani

I like the update,RMH … I agree that the depth is reassuring in dealing with all of these “4-6 weekers” as Bud Black called them, although Bettis is still a concern from a personal and team impact standpoint. Meanwhile … what do we have to do to get the WBC some attention? Problems: (1) it comes in spring training when fans are focused on their MLB teams. (2) it comes in the second half of March, when everyone else is… Read more »

Bill
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Bill

I watched the game tonight from about the 4th inning on. It was exciting although our local heroes (Nolan and Melancen) struggled. I’m hooked and I’ll try to watch the game tomorrow night. I read somewhere that there have been worries about the decline of baseball in Puerto Rico but they sure have some young stars in Lindor, Correa, Baez etc. And rain in LA? We need it more.

Agbayani
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Agbayani

Musgrave: didn’t our old friend Pooter dub Jake McGee “Chubby LaTroy?” Well, I think Musgrave may be Chubby Rusin. Nothing special about his stuff, but he’s starting to look like that 5th starter/spot starter/long reliever lefty type who can be pretty useful. He’s put together a pretty nice stat line this spring. Meanwhile, my boy Freeland is finishing up strong!

Julian
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Julian

Freeland definitely wins that fourth spot. It’s not close. Not much of an outing by Senzatella today. Does he need some more time in AAA? I’m not sure that anyone except Musgrave has won the fifth spot . Couldn’t there be someone on another team without options who we could pick up off of the waiver wire or in a cheap trade?

Agbayani
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Agbayani

Unfortunately Senzatela-Hoffman-Marquez all look like they could use some additional minor league time. I saw a comparison elsewhere of Senzatela and our old friend Juan Nicasio, and at this stage of Senzatela’s development that makes a lot of sense to me. Both could be effective a couple times through the order, but the lack of a really strong 2nd pitch (and the lack of any kind of effective third pitch) limit them. Nicasio never really developed beyond where he was… Read more »

Julian
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Julian

Agbayani, I agree with you. I’d rather see Senzatella, Hoffman, and Marquez have time at AAA to develop their skills then be thrown into major league starts and have their development be stalled. Use Musgrave, and then plug in Rusin. By the end of the season one of the other guys might be pitching in the fifth spot of the rotation

sdcarp
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sdcarp

Nice discussion regarding the 5th SPer battle above. Two initial thoughts before I start rambling: 1. Kyle Freeland is clearly #4. Bravo. Well deserved. I’ll even consider taking him in our Fantasy League auction Saturday if I can get him for $1. I never take COL pitchers. 2. The #5 SPer discussion is nice this year because we’re talking about young guys with upside as opposed to the David Hale/Juan Nicasio/Kyle Kendrick’s of the world. We’ve come a long way… Read more »

sdcarp
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sdcarp

One more unrelated thought:

Thank god we didn’t bite on Derek Norris. I was worried. I’m definitely gaining confidence in the Bridich GM reign, but I occasionally still have flashbacks and expect a stupid move (such as signing Norris). Nice “non-move” Bridich.

Bob K.
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Bob K.
Agbayani
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Agbayani

Saw the Rockies-Padres in Peoria today (hello, spring break!). Peoria Sports Complex is perfectly nice, but lacks the design elements that set Salt River Fields apart … a little shade would be nice for one thing. Also, about half full. Ahh, those distracted Padres fans. Game notes: 1. Chatwood was very sharp. Went 6 innings, only a couple hard hit balls. 7 Ks, and showed the big curve that seemed to be missing in action much of last season. Definitely… Read more »

sdcarp
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sdcarp

Regarding Amarista – I saw him play in Glendale one of the days I was at ST. He played 2nd base that day. Like you, my first impression was that he’s really small compared to all those other giant guys running around. He was taken out twice that day (legally) turning double plays. Both times he hung in there, made perfect throws to 1st, and then bounced right up off the dirt. I was impressed and can see why a… Read more »

Bob K.
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Bob K.

JDLR made the DBacks as a reliever.

sdcarp
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sdcarp

The DBacks Pen looks like a disaster on paper. I also note Archie Bradley may be in their Pen. I sort of like that particular move. But in general…….their Pen, and general roster depth, doesn’t look good.

Bob K.
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Bob K.