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Ever since making it to the World Series in 2007, the Rockies have been in a very strange place. They’ve been among the least competitive teams in the league over that stretch, but they’ve never seemed to have anything resembling a direction. The lineup has always appeared good enough to compete, but the pitching lagged way behind and took the rest of the roster down with it. Now, it looks like they’re officially hitting the reset button. It all started with trading Troy Tulowitzki to Toronto at the deadline, and now they are poised to make at least one more big move involving one of their outfielders.
For a team that hasn’t had much success on the field, they’ve done a phenomenal job developing outfielders in recent years. Carlos Gonzalez is the most recognizable name on this list. He’s only under contract for two more years — for $37 million total — and looked to have lost his value a couple months into 2015. Then, he went on a tear and is back to being an extremely valuable asset. Corey Dickerson may be the best trade chip on the team, with two straight productive seasons and four cheap years of control remaining. Finally, there is Charlie Blackmon. With three years of control remaining and no stand out season to date, he appears to be the most likely to be dealt, though he’ll also bring back the weakest return.
Looking across the league, there are many teams who could be a match with Colorado, but two have stood out as rumored trade partners. The first are the Cardinals, who are looked to replace the production lost from Jason Heyward’s departure via free agency. Although they could probably afford one of the big free agents still out there, that’s never really been their M.O. The other team is the Giants, who are trying to keep their even-year streak alive in 2016. They’ve used almost all of their remaining cash on Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija, but still have a hole in the outfield. Even though it’d come via an intradivisional trade, this would be the best course of action for San Francisco, and could work for the Rockies as well. The Giants and Cardinals have had the most rumors connecting them to Colorado, but with the bloated free agent prices, expect more teams to join the mix over the next few weeks as well, giving the Rockies a prime chance to finally find their direction.
- OK, which one of you asked for a new steroid scandal this holiday season?
- The Nationals took the plunge and signed Daniel Murphy to a three-year deal. Now, what do they do with their middle infield?
- As the Dodgers continue to look for another starting pitcher, they invited Kenta Maeda to Los Angeles over the holiday season.
- Despite their World Series championship, the Royals could also use some rotation help this winter.
- Is Yoenis Cespedes going to end up back on one of his former teams? Probably, since they make up approximately half the league.
- We already know what the Phillies are doing doesn’t constitute tanking, but what could they do if they wanted to go that route.
- Can the Mariners beat the projections in 2016. Or, you know, at least live up to them?
- Mike Leake has historically outperformed his peripherals, but can it continue in St. Louis? Because this is the Cardinals we’re talking about, the answer is yes.
- Atlanta gave up a lot for Hector Olivera last season. Now, they just need to figure out where he’ll play.
- You think Joe Maddon is creative with his lineups? The Cubs used to use four first basemen in one lineup!
- Rule 5 draft picks rarely contribute much of anything, but the Mets got a solid year from Sean Gilmartin in 2015.