Colorado Rockies: The effect of and fixes for the “Coors Field hangover”

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Apr 14, 2021; St. Louis, Missouri, USA; The St. Louis Cardinals salute catcher Yadier Molina (4) for starting his 2,000 game as catcher for one organization during the first inning against the Washington Nationals at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Schedule fix 1: The simple fix

You want to know the way to best help the Rockies? Start every away stand at a middle elevation park. This helps players acclimate on the way down from Coors and should create better offensive results once they get to sea level.

The second part of this fix is to have every homestand come after the team has been at sea level. This one is admittedly more optional and seems to skew the results in the Rockies’ favor for at least the first few games, but baseball is a game built off momentum, and winning the first few games of a certain series can have rippling effects that could change the entire season.

For MLB in general, it would be best if the Rockies both started and ended away stands at middle elevations. The Rockies would be more competitive on away stands, and Coors Field would be more competitive for visiting teams. The Rockies’ sea-based division, however, makes this part of the solution a bit harder to implement.

It also seems that, over the past five years, the schedule has tried to punish the Rockies rather than help ease the climate issue. Coors-to-mid-elevation games happen 6% less than their mid-to-Coors series counterparts, meaning the Rockies play fewer games coming up from sea level than they would if the proportions were even. This also means they play more games going down to sea level than they should if the proportion was even. Just making this proportion even would help the Rockies perform a little better.

But, hey, I like middle elevation, so let’s get drastic.

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