Last week, our own Kevin Henry wrote two articles on the three reasons for why the Colorado Rockies will or will not make their third consecutive playoff appearance in 2019.
All of the reasons he spelled out in those articles are hard to argue against, but, it could be even more simpler than that. The fate of the Colorado Rockies in ’19 could simply depend on 57. That is the number of games the Rockies play against the bottom feeders of the National League West: the Arizona Diamondbacks, San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres.
If the Rockies are able to take advantage of playing in the weakest division in the NL, they could be in position for their first-ever division title over the Dodgers, or at a minimum, another Wild Card berth.
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The Diamondbacks are in rebuilding mode after shipping off Paul Goldschmidt and letting Patrick Corbin move on. The aging Giants are another year older with an enormous payroll and the Padres are well … still the Padres. That leaves the Rockies in prime position to make a run at the Dodgers for the division.
Last season, the Rockies were 34-23 in the 57 games against the D-backs, Giants, and Padres en route to winning 91 games. Now that these teams look to be in worse shape and the rest of the National League has gotten better, the Rockies must look for a better record than that in order to have a shot at the playoffs.
A 40-17 record would be a good starting point. Anything less than 35 wins might be too difficult for the Rockies to overcome.
With more than a third of the schedule against teams who shouldn’t win more than 75 games, the Rockies must make the most out every game they play in the lowly NL West. If they do, Rocktober should be easily attainable.