The Colorado Rockies begin their final and most important road trip of the season on Friday night. The nine-game West Coast swing could easily decide the Rockies’ playoff fate as they play three games each against National League West foes in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Phoenix.
With 16 games left in the season, here are some key things to know before this highly anticipated road trip for the Colorado Rockies:
That is the Rockies’ current record on the road. They are one win away from tying their franchise record of 41-40, happening in both 2009 and 2017 (they made the playoffs both years). Obviously, they will need to crush that record if they plan on winning the NL West. A 46-35 record would be a good start in doing just that. They can’t go worse than 43-38. Otherwise, you can kiss the playoff hopes goodbye.
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This is the Rockies’ record at AT&T Park, Dodger Stadium and Chase Field this season. They are 3-4, including the dramatic ninth-inning home run by DJ LeMahieu on June 28, at the Giants and 3-3 at both the Dodgers and Diamondbacks. They are also a combined 24-21 against these three teams this season.
The Giants are playing horrible baseball and the Rockies must capitalize. They are 1-12 in the last 13 games, including 11 losses in a row. In baseball, it is never wise to say that a team has to sweep a series. However, for the Rockies, they must at least win this series against an already defeated team ready for the offseason, if not sweep them.
Forget the Wild Card
Day by day, it is looking more like the safety net that is the Wild Card might not be there for the Rockies if they fail to win the NL West. Looking at the remaining schedules, it is really difficult to forecast the National League race. However, as long as the St. Louis Cardinals don’t fade down the stretch (and hopefully beat up on the Dodgers this weekend to help the Rockies), the Wild Card game will likely be a NL Central battle between the Cards and the second-place finisher of the Cubs and Brewers.
Astros and Cubs
Before the Rockies head to Arizona on September 21, the Diamondbacks play six games against the Astros and Cubs. After Thursday afternoon’s loss, they are now 4.5 games back, which means if the D-Backs continue to struggle, their season could essentially be over before the Rockies roll into town. That could spell good things for the Rockies if Arizona no longer has anything for which to play.
At 81 wins with 16 games left, the Rockies are in prime position to win their first-ever NL West title. Having a successful final road trip of the season would be a huge step toward doing just that.