Michael Cuddyer (Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
The Colorado Rockies have kept analysts, fans and commenters arguing over the team’s best path leading up to the trade deadline, but the MLB Trade Rumors circulating in these last days seem to ignore all the evidence that points toward a hold status.
Michael Cuddyer has surfaced on nearly every Colorado Rockies trade rumor search since around the beginning of July following his 27-game hitting streak. Many speculated that Cuddyer could be traded for a remedy to the Rockies’ ailing fourth/fifth spots in the rotation.
However, on July 19 the Denver Post quoted Dick Monfort, owner of the Colorado Rockies, as saying there was “Not a chance” of trading Cuddyer. Monfort went on to say that it is intended that Cuddyer replace Todd Helton at first in the 2014 season. ”Toddfather” Helton is expected to retire at the end of the 2013 season after 17 years of service with the Rockies.
The Rockies have clearly stated that neither Troy Tulowitzki, Carlos Gonzalez or any of their three core starters are up for sale. The club also has a reputation for developing talents long-term, so it is highly unlikely that they would consider releasing one of their burgeoning talents like Nolan Arenado or Rex Brothers.
The Rockies are still teetering on the hopes of a repeat of the 2007 late season streak, so it is most likely they will not sell any of the talent that could make that happen.
A team has to have money to be a buyer at this point. A case in point is the recent effort made by the Rockies to sign Ricky Nolasco, which failed because Colorado could not match the financial clout of the Los Angeles Dodgers. A back-end starting pitcher is cheaper, but they still are not cheap.
The Rockies can currently afford to acquire some middle relievers, but that seems like it would be spending money just for the sake of buying anything. The current Rockies bullpen is fairly solid, and adding one or two new arms would not fix Colorado’s troubles right now.
Colorado is currently six games back in 3rd place in the National League West, which has given some a false sense of what that may mean for the pennant race. In the National League, Colorado is nine games back and hovering around 8th place between the Washington Nationals and the Philadelphia Phillies.
Buying now may be a reflection of unbridled optimism, but the money the Rockies could offer at this point is unlikely to attract any significant players to their roster this season.
Collin McHugh is the latest attempt by the Rockies to make due with what they have. Disappointing showings by Drew Pomeranz, Jon Garland, Jeff Francis and Roy Oswalt this season have combined with a string of DL assignments to undermine any momentum the Rockies have tried to mount.
Some are now hailing the return of Juan Nicasio as the next great hope, but his 4.40 ERA is less than indicative of a miraculous second coming.
The best path for the Rockies leading up to this MLB trade deadline is that they should just hold and hope for less injuries in the second half.