The Colorado Rockies are 18-29 and near the bottom of the National League West division.
They have been bad, and the future doesn’t look much better since they could lose their best player, Trevor Story, soon.
The #Rockies are not actively discussing a Trevor Story trade at this point, source says. Story, a free agent after the 2021 season, could be a trade candidate at the deadline unless he's extended by then. @MLB @MLBNetwork
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) February 12, 2021
There are lots of things that aren’t going the way the Rockies would have wanted, but here are two concerning stats about them.
1. 4.92 Overall ERA (Fourth-Worst in MLB)
Everybody knows just how important pitching is in today’s game, and the Rockies hurlers just haven’t been getting the job done consistently.
It’s not uncommon to see the Rockies near the bottom of the ERA leaderboards year after year because of the place they play half of their games, but they won’t sniff respectability with an ERA near five.
Coors Field is a tough place for pitchers given the thin air that makes the ball travel further.
However, the Rockies pitchers have been bad on the road too.
In fact, they have been so bad while playing away from Coors that they have the worst away ERA among all teams at 5.58.
That being the case, they don’t have the Coors excuse anymore.
Everything has gone wrong with the Rockies pitching staff.
That’s just not going to cut it.
There just aren’t many reliable arms on the Rockies staff as a whole, and the situation doesn’t appear likely to improve in the near future, which severely limits their chances to field a competitive enough team to lure star shortstop Story to stay for the long haul.
2. 77 Weighted Runs Created Plus (Worst wRC+ in MLB)
Weighted Runs Created Plus, shortened to wRC+, allows us to determine whether a player or team is performing above or below average offensively.
It basically takes the Runs Created stat and adjusts it to ballpark and ERA.
Since it’s adjusted, it provides us with an arbitrary ‘average’ number, which is 100.
If a team has a 150 wRC+, it means that its offensive production is 50 percent above league average.
In the Rockies’ case, they have a 77 wRC+, which means they have been 23 percent below-average.
That 77 wRC+ is the worst mark in MLB.
The Rockies have the worst wRC+ in baseball at 77. They are slashing .241/.304/.391 as a team.
This version of Luis Castillo is depressing.
— OnBaseMachine (@RedsFan_Brandon) May 14, 2021
It doesn’t necessarily mean that their offense has been putrid, as their 218 runs scored actually rank 10th in the league.
However, the park factor takes a heavy toll on the wRC+ mark since Coors Field is the best venue for offense.
Long story short, Colorado should produce better offensive numbers given their current environment, but since Nolan Arenado was traded and Story got off to a slow start, their overall run production hasn’t been ideal.
A team with a so-so offense, horrendous starting pitching, and unreliable relief pitching isn’t destined to go too far, and certainly won’t fight for a spot in the playoffs.
Colorado is in need of a long rebuild process that should start at the top.
But given the notorious gap in talent between the Rockies and the rest of the competition in the NL West division, postseason baseball isn’t likely to take place in Colorado for a while.