Today, the Colorado Rockies announced their 25-man roster for the National League Division Series against the Milwaukee Brewers.
There are no surprises in the Colorado Rockies infield. Nolan Arenado, Ian Desmond, Trevor Story and DJ LeMahieu will continue as the core of the infield, with promising youngsters Ryan McMahon and Garrett Hampson on the bench. Notably (and thankfully), Pat Valaika missed the cut.
The outfield is what you’d expect: Charlie Blackmon, David Dahl, Carlos Gonzalez, Matt Holliday and Gerardo Parra. Given the Brewers’ short leashes for starters and plans to make game one a bullpen game, we’ll see how Manager Bud Black manages the outfield rotation.
Blackmon and Dahl are a given to be in the lineup, but Holliday would probably start in left field for a platoon advantage against a left-handed starter like Gio González.
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The notable absence here is midseason acquisition Drew Butera, who somehow had two at-bats in the NL Wild Card but looked shaky defensively. This is clearly the right move for the Rockies.
Pitching is where things get compelling. Your NLDS starting rotation: Antonio Senzatela, Tyler Anderson, Kyle Freeland and German Marquez. That means Jon Gray – the opening day and 2017 NL Wild Card starter – missed the cut. But trust in Gray might be at an all-time low, among both Black and Rockies fans, while both Senzatela and Anderson were excellent down the stretch.
Finally, your Rockies NLDS bullpen will have Chad Bettis, Wade Davis, DJ Johnson, Harrison Musgrave, Scott Oberg, Seunghwan Oh, Adam Ottavino and Chris Rusin. I’m thrilled to see Johnson make the cut, even if we’ll only see him in low-leverage situations (like a substantial Rockies lead, one would hope).
But his appearance comes at the expense of big money bullpen arms Jake McGee and Bryan Shaw (combined 2018 bWAR of -1.9 … yikes). From a performance standpoint, this is clearly the right decision but if I told you at the beginning of the season Johnson and Oberg would be make a NLDS bullpen over McGee and Shaw? Inconceivable.
The Rockies continue their playoff run today at 3:07 MST. The lineup is as follows:
- Blackmon, CF
- LeMahieu 2B
- Arenado 3B
- Dahl LF
- Story SS
- Gonzalez, LF
- Desmond, 1B
- Iannetta, C
- Senzatela, SP.
The Brewers will start the proceedings against Brandon Woodruff in what will be a bullpen game for the Brewers.
Game two will be 2:15 PM MST on Friday. Old friend Jhoulys Chacín takes the mound for Milwaukee, and Anderson will probably start for Colorado (though no official starter has been announced).