DENVER — The Colorado Rockies offense has not been particularly good in some time. Down to an 83 wRC+ as a team, the club is only ahead of the Miami Marlins among National League clubs.
Simply put, the Colorado Rockies offense has been 17 precent worse than league average and is only bottomed by Miami.
Similar things could be said about the prior two season’s offensive groups with wRC+ in the mid-80s and both units were solid enough to eek the Rockies into the postseason. So are those few percentage points really the difference or are the Rockies maybe even worse offensively than previously thought?
Those questions might be too big to tackle in this story.
A solid stat that gives an answer to, the “are-the-Rockies-even-this-bad-on-offense-despite-the-fact-that-they’ll-probably-lead-the-league-in-runs-scored-for-the-28th-straight-year-because-they-play-at-Coors-” question is barrel rate.
The Rockies as a team are 27th in baseball and second-worst in the National League at putting the barrel on the ball. Only 6.3 percent of their batted balls this year have been barreled. Furthermore, only 12 percent of their batted balls have even had solid contact or have been barreled, which is 25th in baseball.
On top of being bad at hitting baseballs, the Rockies have actually been pretty lucky. Their xwOBA (Expected Weighted On Base Average) is .024 higher than their wOBA (Weighted On Base Average), which is the biggest discrepancy in the league. However, most teams at the top of the list do have a favorable offensive environment.
Still, they are lucky because only 28.9 percent of their barreled or solidly hit balls have resulted in outs. Only the Cubs and Pirates have had fewer well hit balls result in outs.
All of this doesn’t suggest but is, more or less, verdict on the Rockies top five National League offense, according to traditional runs scored and batting average, is bull****.
None of this is surprising.
Breaking it down Rockie by Rockie, Charlie Blackmon and Chris Iannetta had unlucky years compared to their teammates but not really outliers compared to the league.
More from Colorado Rockies News
- A Colorado Rockies Thanksgiving
- Colorado Rockies: Charlie Blackmon out for the season
- Colorado Rockies: Injuries shift look of roster ahead of Dodgers series
- Colorado Rockies: 3 things we appreciated from Tuesday in San Francisco
- What Bill Schmidt’s comments mean for the Colorado Rockies in 2023
Rather the Rockies have have been leaning to towards the outlier side of things in terms of good luck. For instance, Ryan McMahon has barreled the sixth most balls on the team this year, 26, but has only been recorded out once on that type of contact.
The Rockies knew they had offensive problems going into last offseason and it is part of the reason why they brought in Daniel Murphy. The Rockies lineup was deeper on paper but David Dahl‘s injury as well as some regression from some players have made the results worse than last year.
The deeper you dive into the Rockies, the more that problems appear. These issues just so happen to pertain to an offense that’s only had four non-below average players get over 80 at bats.
In reality, they survived to the postseason twice with offenses just slightly better than this one but they should probably shoot for more production at the plate.