Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Colorado Rockies, National League Champions

It's a truism that the team that's the best on the first day of the season often isn't the best on the last day. The Rockies are a case in point; saddled with utterly dreadful pitching through much of the season, they jettisoned the deadweight in the nick of time and brought up the kids. And damned if those kids can't throw lights out - anywhere else and they'd be talking about Ubaldo Jiminez in the same sentence with guys like Philip Hughes and Homer Bailey.

They've gotten this far with great fielding, with luck, with timely hitting, and with a bench that runs deep in guys who can actually get the bat on the ball. The Rox' end of bench guys are at least league average-type hitters with some pop, as opposed to the Abraham Nunezes of the world who populated the pine for their playoff opponents.

But most of all, they're getting it done with pitching. The numbers for their bullpen are absolutely sick. I don't much care that six of the seven guys down there are former/current "closers"; what does matter is that they're all hard throwers who go after hitters and pound it down in the zone, to minimize home run damage. Game after game, it's been the same story. The Rockies score a run or two and the other team's batters start swinging for the fences, trying to hit five-run homers in every at-bat. The end result, of course, is a lot of strikeouts and weak popups. Check Arizona's numbers with RISP if you don't believe me.

Right now, the Rockies are by far the best team in the National League. They hit, they field, and they pitch. And even last year, who'd have thought you could say that about Colorado?
Post a Comment
There was an error in this gadget