It didn’t take much: just a small sample size at the end of 2013, a flash of power and a quick bat, to sell us on Josh Rutledge.
We were all in. I hesitate to ever try to speak of all Colorado Rockies fans, but I feel like this one was pretty universal one year ago.
Josh Rutledge will play second base. We found our guy, finally. Problem solved!
Rutledge was a highly touted prospect with a big enough bat and the athleticism of a converted shortstop. What could go wrong?
Lots, it turns out. Lots could go wrong, and it did, as Rutledge earned himself a demotion to Triple-A near the end of May. In the meantime DJ LeMahieu seemed to emerge as the de facto second baseman.
DJ’s hold on the job is tenuous, however, so Rutledge will likely have another chance to prove he is the guy. For his part, Rutledge has high hopes to earn his spot back in Spring Training (quotes from MLB.com):
For as slow a start as I had, I had that good a finish, so I don’t look at the average or things like that…I know that the numbers were not what they were before, but I don’t think I necessarily had a terrible year…I definitely got a lot out of last year. I made a bunch of adjustments, and I could tell they worked. I started swinging well at the end of the year. I look forward to adding to that this year. I’m ready to go.”
Here’s the thing: Rutledge blew up in September once again, batting .328/.381/.431 in his final 21 games. Small sample size, sure, but that didn’t stop us from getting our hopes up with this guy last year. Dare we go down that path once more?
That’s the question, Josh Rutledge. And as the cliche would have it: fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice…