With Nolan Arenado just a year from free agency, this is it for the Rockies if they want to win a World Series with him. With improvements in the lineup and in the bullpen, they could do so. Colorado will hope to make these improvements without sacrificing their future.
Rockies Sign IF Daniel Murphy
The Rockies have signed infielder Daniel Murphy to a two-year, $24 million contract. Murphy, 33, is an interesting addition for the Rockies. There’s no doubting the three-time All Star’s hitting ability. In 2016 and 2017 for the Nationals, he put together an OPS north of .900. Last year, his OPS fell to just .790, but he dealt with injuries and was significantly better once he got traded to the Cubs. In Coors Field with the altitude of Colorado, there’s no doubt that Murphy will continue to hit at a high level. Where the issues rest, are with his defensive ability. He is a defensive liability at second base, posting negative 18 defensive runs saved last season despite not playing the full season. Therefore, he won’t be able to replace current free agent DJ LeMahieu, who by contrast had a defensive runs saved of positive 18 last season. It’s likely he’ll shift over to first base, where the Rockies got an OPS of just .719 last season. He has played first base in the past, so this won’t be a rough transition for him. Assuming top prospect Brendan Rodgers can be inserted at second base this season, then this gives the Rockies a much better lineup to compliment their young pitching staff. This is a slight overpay, but it’s a great addition to help them try to claim a World Series title in what may be Nolan Arenado’s final season.
Rockies Extend 3B Nolan Arenado
Rockies Extend Manager Bud Black
The Rockies have extended manager Bud Black on a three-year contract extension that runs through the 2022 season. Black, 61, has had tremendous success as the manager of the Rockies, with a 178-147 record with postseason appearances in each of the last two seasons. Pointed out by Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors, the Rockies pitchers have also had more success with Black, which may do to his fifteen year career as a pitcher and seven-year career as a pitching coach. Last season, despite having just a +25 run differential, Black led the Rockies to the NLDS with a 91-72 record. Several of the team’s players have taken key steps in their development under Black, and the match seems to be working out perfectly. Obviously, he’s an outlier in a league that is now favoring younger managers, but he seems to connect well with the core group in Colorado, and it’s a lot easier for him to manage with worrying about being on the final year of his contract.
*Will Be Updated With Every Move The Rockies Make