Colorado Rockies: Is Ian Desmond a cause for concern?
By Aaron Hurt
Spring training stats and records mean very little for obvious reasons. Spring is for veteran players to work on mechanics and for younger/fringe roster players to showcase their abilities. Starting pitchers are limited to a couple innings as they work up arm strength and regulars see a couple at-bats per game.
That is why the Rockies’ current 3-7 (1 tie) record is nothing to worry about. But what could be worrisome is that Ian Desmond has struggled mightily in his early Cactus League contests.
Ian Desmond has only appeared in 5 games which gives us a small sample size to go off of. The scary thing is he has managed only 1 single in 13 at-bats including 4 strike outs.
In order to jump start Desmond, Rockies manager Bud Black had him DH in Monday’s game against the Cubs to no avail. Typically, this wouldn’t be a cause for concern if you compare him to the likes of Nolan Arenado, who has a struggled at the plate hitting 4-for-18.
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What the problem with Desmond really is
The problem is that Ian Desmond is coming off an injury plague season where he appeared in 95 games, hit .274 with 7 HRs and 40 RBIs instead of an MVP caliber season. After signing a lucrative 5 year, $70 million contract, the Rockies desperately need to see a return on their investment especially when he is making $22 million this year alone.
To make matters worse, if he doesn’t live up to his contract, that will be a lot of wasted money that could have used to re-sign MVP candidates Arenado and Blackmon.
This could be making a mountain out of a mole hill but if Desmond doesn’t turn things around, he could become the biggest Rockies free agent blunder since Mike Hampton. Unfortunately, this time it could be a lot more costly.
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There is still three more weeks until the Rockies open up the season at the Arizona Diamondbacks. Hopefully, Desmond can find his swing before March 29th and live up to his large contract.