Top Level Sports
Published in

Top Level Sports

Rockies Fail Their Fans With Arenado Trade

Nolan Arenado (Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports)

A blockbuster trade was done on Monday between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Colorado Rockies. Except, only one side got a ‘blockbuster’ deal. Nolan Arenado, who spent his entire career in Colorado, is now heading to the Cardinals.

The Rockies are sending $50 million along with him. Why, you ask? No one really knows. It would be one thing if they sent the money to get higher prospects in return, but the best guy they got from the Cardinals system was ranked 9th. That’s from a team that has the 18th best farm system, so it’s not like they had a ton of talent like the Rays, Tigers, and Padres do. You have to at least get a top 5 player in the farm for someone like Nolan Arenado. The Rockies failed to do so.

Instead, they get three pitchers and two infielders and four of those players are more or less coin flips on whether they’ll succeed in the major leagues.

Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich told reporters on Tuesday that this was not a rebuild and that they have a team built to compete. Really? Bridich is lying to the media, the fans, and to the players. If this wasn’t a rebuild, they would’ve signed more than just Daniel Murphy in the last three years. They’ve made very little changes, other than signing Murphy and other players who are on the downward slope, which is the reason Nolan Arenado felt betrayed and wanted out of Colorado.

Rumors started speculating a year ago that Arenado wanted out of Colorado. Arenado said that he signed with the Rockies because they told him they would do everything to try to win. Instead, they just kept mostly the same roster and hoped it would make them winners. They peaked in 2018 with that roster and nearly won the division, but ultimately lost the tie-breaker game to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Nolan Arenado (Jack Dempsey | Credit: AP)

After they made it past the Cubs in the 2018 NL Wild Card Game, they got swept by the Brewers in the Division Series. That offseason, they let infielder DJ LeMahieu sign with the New York Yankees for $12 million a year over a two-year contract. Which by MLB standards, isn’t all that much. LeMahieu went on to bat .327 in 2019 and .364 in 2020. Even Rockies co-owner Dick Monfort admitted that losing LeMahieu was a big deal and he wishes they could re-do that.

It’s behaviors like this that will make Colorado a hard sell to want to play for. They already have a disadvantage at signing free agent pitchers due to the elevation that they play at in Denver.

Now the attention turns to Trevor Story, Colorado’s All-Star shortstop. Story is a free agent after the 2021 season. You could make the argument that the Rockies could use the freed up money from Arenado to sign Story long-term. But if you’re Trevor Story, why would you want to? Management would have to make a big statement that they’re truly trying to win. Until then, I would hit free-agency and go with the best fit.

Plus, Story made comments to Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post where he admitted the Arenado trade made him frustrated.

For the fans of the Rockies, it really is tough to have to watch some of their greatest players that they have drafted over the years leave in some form or fashion.

Rockies need to either go for it or rebuild. My opinion is they need to rebuild. The talent just isn’t there, despite what the GM and owners think. Not to mention, the NL West is full of great teams with the Dodgers and Padres leading the way. Either way, they need to pick a direction and stick to it, and be transparent with their fans on what they are.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store