DENVER – In a rather surprising roster move on Thursday, the Colorado Rockies demoted Ryan McMahon. While the reason for the move was pretty explainable, the move itself felt off.
What the Rockies really did was recall RHP Yency Almonte in order to provided much needed help to the right-handed portion of their bullpen. Now with a nine-man bullpen and three catchers on the active roster, there are a bunch of oddities but more on all that later.
On Wednesday night, Ryan McMahon hit (an eventual) game-winning, pinch-hit, three-run home run. Bud Black has long had a rule that if you hit a homer you play the next day, the rule has not applied to McMahon after either of the two homers the young infielder has hit.
The swing he put on the ball last night was actually a new one. Rox Pile caught up with the left-handed hitter after the game and he told of a mechanical adjustment he made where he changed the angle of his bat when he was loading.
"“I know it’s been one day, but it just feels like I don’t need to swing harder to be on time, which has been my problem,” McMahon said. “It felt easier and hopefully I roll with it. Baseball is a hard game. It doesn’t mean it’s fixed or I’m going to hit a home run every time.”"
More from Rox Pile
- A Colorado Rockies Thanksgiving
- Colorado Rockies: What if Todd Helton had played football instead?
- Colorado Rockies: Charlie Blackmon out for the season
- Colorado Rockies: Injuries shift look of roster ahead of Dodgers series
- Colorado Rockies: Has Sean Bouchard earned a second look in 2023?
Like he said, it was one swing but he hadn’t turned around on a pitch like that all year. It was some of the power, which was reported about him as one of best Rockies prospects, that had not yet carried over to the big league level.
"“We’ve talked about that here, inside the walls of the clubhouse and some of the things he needs to do, and that’s one of them — get the bat head out on a fastball,” Rockies manager Bud Black said. “That was awesome.”“It feels good to have a better idea, and to know all the other stuff I was doing wasn’t wrong,” McMahon said."
The 23-year-old has appeared in 47 games for the Rockies in 2018, batting .211 with two home runs and nine RBI. However, he was hitting .244 since his last call-up and had been playing both first and second base.
The moment of last night felt like it could propel the club so it’s weird that the player that was responsible for it, is not up.
"“I was way too excited — it felt like I was sprinting around the bases, just because I wanted to get back to the dugout,” McMahon said. “As soon as I stepped on home plate, I saw the guys and said, ‘All right. Let’s celebrate.'”“That’s the most important play of the entire game, in my opinion,” Blackmon said of McMahon’s homer. “He’s been working really hard. It’s nice to see that hard work pay off.”"
The Rockies were in a bind with their bullpen in the shape that it is in and they do face many left-handed starters here in the upcoming days—something RyMac has struggled to hit—but the move still was a bit surprising given his Wednesday night.