I recently wrote in this same forum that the Rockies were about to hit a stretch in the schedule that could tell us a lot about what to expect during the second half of the season.
I also suggested that the boys from Blake Street had better be on top of their game, because if they were not sharp against high-caliber competition they could let the division slip away entirely, lose precious ground in the Wild Card race, or both.
At that time, the Rockies were in the thick of the Wild Card hunt and shared almost identical records with other National League teams also vying for wild card contention.
Also at that time, Colorado was facing upcoming meetings against the Dodgers, who were 11 games up on the second-place Rockies in the National League West, as well as the Astros, who are clearly one of the league’s top tier teams, and then the Arizona Diamondbacks, a divisional rival.
It was obvious that the Rockies were about to enter a portion of the schedule that could potentially provide much-needed momentum headed into the second half of the season, or conversely, they could suffer an untimely losing streak against a bevy of MLB heavyweights.
Well, the results are in. Since July 2, the Rockies have won four of 15 games. They have fallen to 47-52 overall. They are now 18.5 games behind the division-leading Dodgers, and are fourth place in the five-team National League West.
Six National League teams are ahead of the Rockies in the Wild Card race: Brewers, Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Giants, Nationals and Phillies. Catching one or two teams is a tall order, because Colorado needs to win while those teams lose.
But catching six teams is ridiculously difficult, because Colorado needs all of them to lose games, and the likelihood of that happening becomes smaller as the list of teams ahead of them grows larger.
There is one good piece of news, and that is that there are still about 60 games remaining on the regular season schedule. That’s a lot of baseball, and simple math says there is still enough time, numerically, for anything to happen.
But based on the current standings, as well as how the Rockies are currently trending, I would say we had better keep the defibrillator close by and the first responders’ number at the top of our contacts list.
The Rockies, in my opinion, are not dead, but certainly not healthy. They are not numerically eliminated, but they need a massive winning streak and a truckload of luck to turn the numbers in their favor and save a season that is currently in critical condition.
Even more concerning is the multitude of ways in which the Rockies have dropped 11 of their last 15 games. They lost games early, and lost games late. They lost by a lot, and lost by a little. They lost because of pitching at times, and other times were unable to generate timely offense. Sometimes both.
Also discouraging is that they lost on the road, and lost at Coors Field.
It is often said about good teams that they have the ability to win in many ways, and under a variety of circumstances. Bad teams, on the other hand, find countless ways to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, just as the Rockies have done recently.
I’m thinking top brass had better start reaching out around the league to find help in free agency before it’s too late. If the current cast of players on this roster were capable of contending for a World Series, we would have seen some evidence of that by now.
Let’s not wait. Let’s make some significant moves toward meaningful trades or free agency acquisitions while there is still time.
As Yogi Berra famously said, “It gets late early around here.”
The season is still less than 2/3 over, but it is beginning to feel very late, very early for the Rockies.