You know the funny thing about baseball, though? It does not matter how good the pitching is, a team can only win games if they score more runs than their opponents. Jokes aside, Colorado’s offense isn’t prolific by any stretch. When a small to middle market team devotes upward of $50 million to its bullpen, there just isn’t enough cash left to sign a top-to-bottom killer line up, like a Yankees or a Dodgers team. While I imagine the Rockies probably will not attempt as many sacrifice bunts as the Royals did in 2015, the best way to compare the two offenses is to look at the production from 2015 Royals and 2017 Rockies.
Now, the statistics are going to be a tiny bit misaligned because of the whole designated hitter versus pitcher hitter. However, taking the pitchers’ stats out of both teams’ lines seem to be slightly more apples-to-apples. What are we concluding by looking at the batting like totals for both these teams? Well, neither is particularly killer top-to-bottom. These stat lines aren’t wildly different in terms of what is produced overall, either. In order; Alcides Escobar, Ben Zobrist, Lorenzo Cain, Eric Hosmer, Kendrys Morales, Mike Moustakas, Salvador Perez, Alex Gordon and some mix of below-replacement level players was the most-used lineup during the regular season in 2015, according to Baseball-Reference.com. It’s clear that the Royals relied on quality at-bats, speed, and aggressive base running … which is pretty unconventional for an American League team these days.
As stated earlier, what each offense produced in their given season is almost a wash when compared to each other. However, I think the Rockies are a little better suited for a postseason run than the Royals were. They aren’t as one-dimensional either. Looking at the at the stat line, the Rockies actually did a little better job relying less on luck and more about getting on base. Obviously playing with less speed, the Rockies relied on power to produce offense. With Bud experimenting this spring; it’s anyone’s guess what the line up will look like. Personally, I think, in order, Ian Desmond, DJ LeMahieu, Charlie Blackmon, Nolan Arenado, Gerardo Parra, Trevor Story, Ryan McMahon, and Chris Iannetta will probably get the most usage this season.
This projected lineup will feature some pop from Blackmon, Arenado, and even a little from Desmond, if he bounces back. Your quality at-bats will come from Blackmon, Arenado, LeMahieu and Parra, all of whom are coming off career, or near career, best in batting average. Story, and the addition of Iannetta, will provide some streaky power at the tail end of the lineup. With first base in question, we’ll just call McMahon a wild card that could go either way. The Rockies will even feature a little bit of speed and aggressive base running.