The Rockies striking out at the trade deadline is cause for concern
The MLB’s trade deadline concluded a week ago and I still feel the same nauseous feeling that I did last Thursday about the Rockies moves, or lack thereof.
This year’s deadline saw a good amount of moves made. In years past, we’ve probably seen more shocking trades, but this year’s deadline still gave us plenty of shocking moves approaching and right at the deadline. The National League West was also very busy at the trade deadline this season. Well pretty much everyone, except for the Colorado Rockies.
The Diamondbacks were arguably the busiest team in all of baseball at the deadline. Arizona traded away starter Zack Greinke right at the deadline to the Astros for a huge haul of prospects. They also traded top prospect Jazz Chisholm to the Marlins for Miami’s top prospect and current big league starting pitcher Zac Gallen. They also pulled off some other minor moves, such as trading away catcher John Ryan Murphy to the Braves. T
he Padres made a splash, as well, trading for top outfield prospect Taylor Trammel from the Reds as part of a three team deal. San Diego did technically “sell” slightly this year with giving away outfielder Franmil Reyes and pitcher Logan Allen, but they bought back a big-time prospect in Trammell.
The Giants also made some moves, as they traded for second baseman Scooter Gennett and traded away a trio of pitchers – Marc Melancon to the Braves, Sam Dyson to the Astros and Drew Pomeranz to the Brewers. They also hung onto Madison Bumgarner.
The Dodgers stayed mostly pat, except for acquiring infielder Jed Gyrko from the Cardinals. That could come back to bite them with how weak their bullpen has been this season, but the Dodgers are still really stacked and will make the playoffs easily.
So what did the Rockies do to help their team now or in the future? Well, they acquired reliever Joseph Harvey from the Yankees.
Now, Harvey has had a good start to his career in the minor leagues with the Yankees. He has also had some decent outings this year when he has been at the big-league level. Honestly, I like the move. But, when it’s the only deal the Rockies made at the deadline this season, there’s a huge problem. Especially this year when teams on the fringe of contending or not contending at all were some of the busiest and most successful teams.
The Diamondbacks were the big winners at the deadline this year. Arizona now has a huge haul of top prospects coming back for Greinke, they have a stud pitcher in Gallen who has looked really good at the minor and big-league levels and a decent crop of talent at the big-league level already waiting.
Other teams that are not necessarily contenders this season as well made some big moves, such as the Mets and Reds. They were able to acquire a starting pitching that they have control over for at least another year.
What did the Rockies get? A middle-of-the-road reliever. This was a huge fail for the Rockies and general manager Jeff Bridich at the deadline.
In recent weeks, I wrote that the Rockies should think about trading outfielder Charlie Blackmon to a contender in exchange for big-league / minor-league talent. Obviously, the Rockies did not do that at the deadline. I still think they should make the move this offseason during the Baseball Winter Meetings. If they don’t want to make that move right now in the middle of the season, I completely understand. But I think that’s where the Rockies once again go wrong.
The Rockies could have made so many moves. They could have made similar moves to what the Diamondbacks, Mets or Reds did. The Rockies could have sold off Daniel Murphy or any of the aging bullpen arms they have for minor-league assets or even at the very least players with some upside that could use a fresh start on a new team.
The Rockies neither improved for the future or got better in the immediate for this season. This is a problem in both scenarios for Colorado. The way the Rockies have been playing the last month suggests they are going to miss the playoffs by quite a bit. Even more so after the terrible start this week against the Astros. Add the fact that the National League West isn’t going to get any easier in the upcoming years and you have a recipe for huge disaster.
What it spells out is that the Rockies could miss the playoffs this season and the next handful of years, as well. The Dodgers have money to spend, a lot of big-league talent and a lot of minor-league talent/depth. The Padres are starting to show off their minor-league talent this year at the big-league level and just added another future piece in Trammell. The Giants for all of their woes the past couple of years are actually winning more this year and have somewhat rebuilt their minor-league depth. The Diamondbacks now have fully restocked and could be ready within the next handful of years to once again go for a division title.
The Rockies, meanwhile, are stuck in neutral with the car rolling back down the hill. Bridich and Company could have made some more noise at the deadline and not doing so may come back to haunt them, both in the short term and long term for the club. I still like some of what the Rockies have in their minor-league system and of course at the big-league level, but it’s nowhere good enough to allow the team to compete in the National League West and for even a wild-card berth.
There’s always a chance that the Rockies make some big moves this upcoming offseason to bolster the team. However, as it sits right now there could be some rough days ahead for Rockies fans, and so far there has been since the deadline concluded last Thursday.