Colorado Rockies: Chad Bettis has been biggest surprise of season

DENVER, COLORADO - MAY 25: Pitcher Chad Bettis #35 of the Colorado Rockies throws in the fifth inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Coors Field on May 25, 2019 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
DENVER, COLORADO - MAY 25: Pitcher Chad Bettis #35 of the Colorado Rockies throws in the fifth inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Coors Field on May 25, 2019 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /
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They say that, in baseball, every good team needs to have a few unexpected contributors. Regardless of how good the team was the year before, they are always in need of one or two surprise impact players if the team is going to return to the playoffs. For the 2019 Colorado Rockies, that player is Chad Bettis.

With his success on both sides of the ball, you could also make an argument that Tony Wolters (.309 AVG, 19 RBI, 12 XBH, and already 15 more hits than he had ALL of last season) has been the Colorado Rockies‘ biggest surprise. However, for now, that title will go to the former veteran starter who has become one of the team’s most indispensable relievers.

In 2019, the Rockies pitching situation has done a 180. Last season, the rotation was excellent while the bullpen struggled mightily. This year, it has been the starting pitching that has given the Rockies problems while (last night’s debacle aside) the bullpen has quietly been one of the best in the game.

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A big reason for that success has been the dominance of Chad Bettis out of the bullpen. Since moving into a relief role, the right-hander had thrown 24.2 innings, posting a 1.46 ERA and a 0.93 WHIP until surrendering two runs last night. Bettis has shown the versatility to get big outs in the late innings as well as throw multiple innings in the majority of his appearances. The two runs Bettis allowed last night broke a 14.2-inning scoreless streak, dating back a full month to May 15.

Bettis’ success has not only kept the Rockies in games they otherwise would have likely lost, but his ability to eat up several innings has also spared the bullpen from being overly taxed and kept the Rockies from needing to keep struggling starters in the game longer than necessary.

The rest of the bullpen has followed Bettis’ lead to form one of the more dependable units we’ve seen in Colorado in a long time.

Next. And let's not forget about Daniel Murphy's turnaround.... dark

While there have been plenty of key contributions this year up and down the roster, I think it’s safe to say that the Rockies would not be where they are right now without Chad Bettis … their biggest surprise of 2019.