The 2020 Colorado Rockies had something wrong with them for most of the season and not much could be done about it externally.
All season long, there was something that bothered me about the 2020 Colorado Rockies. There was a hole that was never addressed. It wasn’t something you could necessarily fix with a trade or by bringing in a player with a certain skillset. If you saw any of the San Diego Padres’ 11-9 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Thursday you witnessed something lacking from every game the Rockies played this season. You saw a team that wanted to win.
Not only did it look like the Rockies didn’t want to win. They didn’t even looked like they wanted to play. Every lunging empty swing at a pitch in the dirt looked like a desperate cry to get the at-bat over with as quickly as possible.
For all the bullpen problems and offense problems that have been discussed with this team, perhaps the biggest reason they fell apart so horrifically was their glaring energy problem.
Now, I’m sure to some degree the team wanted to win. Baseball is their life. They’re professional athletes, and professional athletes tend to be pretty competitive by nature. But they’re also human and susceptible to apathy and indifference.
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There’s a difference between a bad season and an apathetic season and this year was a miserable mix of the two. With few exceptions (Josh Fuentes, Antonio Senzatela, and Kyle Freeland were three of the only players who could be counted on regularly to show some emotion), this team sleepwalked through the season.
I understand there may not have been a lot to get excited about, but for most of the year, the team was still in the playoff hunt. But if you watched a game out of context, you’d have no idea. Even in the incredibly disappointing 2019 season, the team rallied around the “Las Cucarachas” rallying cry and the games were fun to watch, even though the season had turned into a disaster.
This team needed to show some emotion. Get excited. And if there’s nothing to get excited about, get mad. But please don’t hang your head and drag the bat back to the dugout. All the talent in the world means nothing if you play with the level of apathy the Rockies did in 2020. Roster holes can be filled, but attitude problems have proven a much harder issue to address.
There is a lot of work to be done this offseason, but if someone doesn’t get ahold of this team and set their attitude straight, all other efforts will be in vain.