Walt Weiss and the Colorado Rockies: Also Gritty

Resisting the apparent influx of glamorous, soft, lazy, and wont-to-be-coddled Major League Baseball players, certain managers and organizations have placed a premium on grit as they evaluate players.

The desired players fit any and all of the following buzz words:

  • Gritty
  • Grinder
  • Hustles
  • Fundamentally sound
  • Plays the game right

Things didn’t used to be so complicated. It used to be that “gritty” simply meant “not that good.” But now it means something more. It serves as an indictment of the personal make-ups of guys who “aren’t a good fit” with certain teams. In some cases it becomes the trump card for a team to justify parting with talented players.

Grit has been a buzzword in the National League West the last two years, thanks mostly to this man.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

But now, not to be undone, the Colorado Rockies and manager Walt Weiss are expressing their desire to build a team of gritty, hustling, playing-the-game-right kind of dudes.

Quoted in a column from the one and only Mark Kiszla:

In our sport, more than any other sport, the ability to compete and grind and play with grit is extremely important, because we have to play at the highest level virtually every day for seven months. There’s no other sport like that…The ability to compete through difficult circumstances and still believe you can play up here even when you get beat up by the game … The self doubt, even though it does creep in, if you can deal with that and still succeed, it’s the X factor.”

Shoot, I forgot the “belief” aspect and the ability to overcome self doubt. That’s a classic mistake from a non-gritty fella such as myself.

In the column Kiszla goes on to claim that it was the right move to trade Dexter Fowler because of his lack of grit. It is not necessarily a connection Weiss is making, but he was happy to throw around the importance of those buzz words anyway.

So yes, as much as I have enjoyed poking fun at the Diamondbacks for their desire to be gritty, it looks like the Rockies would like the world to know that they are also gritty.

Neat.

Tags: Colorado Rockies Walt Weiss

  • Juan Pablo Zubillaga

    Suppose you’re a really smart engineer or lawyer who was recruited with high hopes by a big firm. You’ve got great potential, you’re a really nice guy, and on top of that you have a great smile. For some reason you keep underperforming your potential, you show up late every other morning, miss deadlines very often, and they’re paying you 100k a year….. My guess is you’re probably getting the boot.

    I’m not saying this is necessarily what happened with Fowler, but if he was indeed dragging his feet, I can see how the Rockies got tired of him.

    • Hayden Kane

      Totally agree, Juan Pablo. But the thing is, the Rockies did not have to point to anything else other than Fowler’s inconsistent production on the field to make that decision. The need to take a swipe at him in the media and cite intangibles is what I think is probably unnecessary. You make a great point, though…I appreciate the comment.

      • Juan Pablo Zubillaga

        You’re right, it wasn’t handled well. I still wish Dex finally lives up to his potential, actually have him on my fantasy team, so I’m still rooting for him.