Former Rockies manager Clint Hurdle has his Pirates in the postseason for the second season in a row. His team still has a shot to win the NL Central. Meanwhile, his old team is having another losing season with no end in sight.
The Rockies have been eliminated from the playoffs since May. This is their fourth losing season in a row, and the team has had two winning seasons since Hurdle was fired. It’s clear he was not the problem at all.
The Rockies can talk about injuries and bad luck all they want to explain why the team stinks, but they are fooling themselves and to the fans. Their problem starts with the front office who can’t find pitchers follow by coaches who can’t develop guys in the farm system. This is a team that is fundamentally bad year after year.
There was a reason the Rockies were close to losing 100 games this season. They are a terrible team. They can’t pitch, hit, field or do the little things to win games. For my money, this year’s Rockies are the worst Rockies team ever.
It’s hard to believe anything is going to change next year. These are the same bad players that will be here next year. Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez are going to be hurt next year just like they always are every year. Walt Weiss will still be the manager despite the fact he has been horrible in his two years of managing the Rockies.
There won’t be any changes in the front office at all. That’s remarkable despite four straight losing seasons and five straight nonplayoff seasons. Despite the team not finding winning players, Dan O’Dowd and Bill Geivett are employed for life. There’s no accountability with the Rockies, and that’s the losing culture the team has created. Players, managers and front office can be inept with no consequences.
It’s no wonder why Weiss told Denver Post’s Mark Kiszla that he won’t resign as the Rockies manager despite piling up all the losses. It’s not because he is a quitter. It’s because he knows his bosses won’t get on him for losing. Winning is not a priority with the organization. As long as they are making money at Coors Field, that’s all that matters.
If Weiss hated losing, he would have pull a Jim Leyland and Jim Tracy by bailing out rather than putting up with inept players and an incompetent organization. He is staying on because it beats coaching high school baseball. He also knows no team would ever hire him.
The starting rotation will be the same, which features Jorge De La Rosa, Tyler Matzek and pray for rain for next three games. Maybe Eddie Butler and Jonathan Gray can do something next year, but history says they will flop rather than blossom. Rockies have not developed pitchers forever. Sure, Jeff Francis and Ubaldo Jimenez did good things, but they flopped in the end.
The bullpen needs so many new faces. It’s hard to trust anyone out of the bullpen anymore. Does anyone think O’Dowd and his staff will come up with new guys that will do better?
This front office has had several years to make the rotation and bullpen better. They haven’t gotten it done. In fact, there has been no effort to improve the pitching in the last couple of years. Either these guys don’t know what they are doing or they can’t find the right fit.
It’s not easy finding the right pitchers at Coors Field. It’s something O’Dowd makes a point to mention when he used to talk to the Denver media. With that said, general managers are being paid to figure it out. They certainly pay money to scouts to figure something out.
What’s alarming is the Rockies know it’s hard to win. They have given that excuse to justify their struggles. They have accepted it. This isn’t encouraging. As long as the losing culture exists, nothing is going to change. That’s why there is no reason to be optimistic. The more we watch the Rockies the last few years, the more we realized 2007 and 2009 were fluke.
Go ahead and be optimistic about the Rockies winning seven of eight and talking about how injuries hurt the team if it makes a Rockies fan feel better.
Anyone that knows baseball would know better.
The Rockies should know better rather than lying to the fans about what went wrong.
Contact or Follow Leslie Monteiro: @LightRodWriter