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A 10-3 loss for the Rockies is how they will enter the All-Star break and while it may not have been a terrible first half, there was a lot left to be desired. The offense lacked consistency on the road and at home, the starting pitching has been streaky going through stretches of quality outings and outings where they didn’t stand a chance, and the bullpen has been shaky at best. But that is not to say there wasn’t a lot of good that came out of the first half as well.
Two starting pitchers have shown themselves to be very solid and a part of this Rockies team in the future. Jon Gray and Tyler Anderson have both pitched terrific and while Anderson only has six starts under his belt, not one of those starts has been bad. Gray has been very similar but with 15 starts through the year. Gray has only had four starts you could call bad and one was due to arm fatigue that he quickly recovered from. Other than that he hasn’t had a bad start since the middle of May and the other two starts came in his first two outings of 2016.
Anderson has had six starts and gone at least 5.2 innings in all of them while not allowing more than three runs (and that only happened once). The Rockies have to love what they have seen from Anderson thus far and it adds another major league ready pitcher to their future.
Obviously there is also Tyler Chatwood who has pitched well this year, but he has not been the same pitcher at home as he has been on the road. Pitching at Coors Field is a big part of being a pitcher for the Rockies, but Chatwood has been by no means bad this year. With those three pitchers, the Rockies are very close to a solid and complete staff that will compete and get them to the playoffs.
There have also been some very bright spots in the offense. A 1-2 punch at the top of the lineup made up of Charlie Blackmon and DJ LeMahieu gives the Rockies some of the best table setters in the MLB. Blackmon is slashing .310/.374/.493 and LeMahieu is slashing .334/.398/.490. Both of them get on base a lot and give the middle of the order lots of opportunities to drive them in.
Then there are the two All-Stars for the Rockies Carlos Gonzalez and Nolan Arenado. Cargo is having a great year and if the Rockies decide to use him as a trade chip (they shouldn’t and I don’t think it’s that likely) they will get some pretty good pieces for him. Nolan is on pace to set career highs all over again, while also already surpassing is career high walk total. That is a key piece for Nolan as that was the only thing missing from his offensive game last year.
And no Rockies post can go without mentioning the phenom Trevor Story. While he has struck out A LOT this first half, he is also showing power beyond his years. Plate discipline will come and it is something that he should work on in the second half, but hitting as many home runs as he has this first half is a pleasure to see and makes every game fun. He is but another potential star player that the Rockies have and was very nearly an All-Star.
There are also lots of key pieces for the Rockies future that are very close to being at the big leagues. A couple of pitchers and a couple of outfielders are ready to make an impact and next year the Rockies could see competing as the Astros did last year. They are young, hungry, and have the star player power to carry the team when they are slacking. The only pieces that are missing are in the bullpen, and the Rockies still have some really great pitchers there and some pitchers with lots of potential.
This second half will be one to show what the Rockies can do next year. The Rockies will likely be sellers at the deadline, but they should not sell too much as a complete rebuild is certainly not necessary. The second half may not be exactly pretty, but it will be a great time for the young guys to get some time under their belts.