The Colorado Rockies are in need of some help when it comes to pitching. With that in mind, it’s going to take the Rockies giving up something in order to get the help they need on the mound from an outside source.
Knowing this, we threw out the idea of what it would take for the Colorado Rockies to obtain some pitching to our fellow FanSided baseball sites … but also knowing something had to be given up in return. Looking at the assets of the team, one of the areas with a wealth of talent is the outfield.
Knowing that Charlie Blackmon will more than likely hold down right field again in 2020 and David Dahl will return from his high ankle sprain to assume the center field role (where manager Bud Black has said that he likes Dahl’s defensive presence), that likely leaves left field as the spot with the most competition in spring training.
Sam Hilliard showed what he could do in limited September at-bats (seven home runs and a .273/.356/.649 slash line in 77 at-bats) and flashed great potential for impacting the team more in 2020 by playing all three outfield positions. Ian Desmond showed he could be useful when hitting against left-handers (.297 average vs. .226 against right-handers). Garrett Hampson‘s .318 average in September with five homers and nine stolen bases won’t be forgotten either when it comes time to look at outfield contributors.
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
Those are five solid choices for the Rockies when it comes to outfield play. Of course, that doesn’t include Raimel Tapia, who could prove to be a trading chip for Colorado in the offseason if they want to try to land some pitching.
Forcing the Rockies to keep him on the roster or lose him as he was out of minor league options to start the 2019 campaign, the 25-year-old Tapia had his moments last season, posting a .275/.309/.415 slash line in 426 at-bats. He also finished with a 74 OPS+ and -0.9 WAR and finished the campaign by hitting just .170 and striking out 17 times in 53 September at-bats.
Tapia still has work to do on his defense (yes, despite making maybe the catch of the year) and has to get on base more in order (21 walks last season versus 100 strikeouts for a 23.5 percent strikeout rate) to use his speed as a weapon. Will the Rockies continue to be patient with him knowing there are other outfield options available?
As a hypothetical scenario, we reached out to our other FanSided baseball sites to see they believed any of their teams would be interested in Tapia in exchange for pitching. Our colleagues from AroundTheFoghorn.com, covering the San Francisco Giants, responded.