Colorado Rockies trade rumors: The shortstop edition

DENVER, CO - JULY 5: Trevor Story #27 of the Colorado Rockies leaps over Arismendy Alcantara #30 of the Cincinnati Reds to complete a double play during the ninth inning at Coors Field on July 5, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. The Rockies defeated the Reds 5-3. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JULY 5: Trevor Story #27 of the Colorado Rockies leaps over Arismendy Alcantara #30 of the Cincinnati Reds to complete a double play during the ninth inning at Coors Field on July 5, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. The Rockies defeated the Reds 5-3. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images) /
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The Rockies will be shopping for a shortstop but obviously, it remains to be seen if they can pull anything off. However, if they do acquire a shortstop to help them for the remainder of the season, it will probably be Cozart because he would help the Rockies in a multitude of ways.

He would help offensively, particularly with the average and on-base percentage. He has performed the best hitting second in the lineup so I suspect that if the Rockies were to acquire Cozart, he would hit in the second spot behind Charlie Blackmon and DJ LeMahieu (if he doesn’t have any lingering groin issues, as discussed by our own Kevin Henry in an article yesterday) would move into the seven or eight spot.

In his career, LeMahieu’s numbers are virtually identical in the second and eighth spots. In the eight spot, he has only hit 233 times compared to 318 in the two hole but that’s where the differences end. He has hit exactly .310 in both positions, his on-base percentage is slightly decreased in the eight hole (.367 down to .354) but his slugging is virtually identical (.409 hitting eighth compared to .412 in the two hole). His BABIP is actually higher hitting eighth (.366 to .357) and his OPS+ is virtually the same (103 hitting eighth to 108 hitting second).

The Rockies, in 2017, in the eight hole have a .227/.299/.303 slash line, which is 27th, 23rd, and 29th in all of baseball. By acquiring Cozart to play shortstop and hit second and move LeMahieu to the eight hole (or perhaps even seventh), the team would be better offensively.

He would also help defensively (as mentioned earlier) but, perhaps most importantly, he would bring veteran leadership and a player to Colorado who has postseason experience (in 2012 and 2013 with the Reds). Although it would probably only be for the short term, acquiring Cozart, for the Rockies, might be one of the best moves that they can make before the deadline.

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