Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post published a mailbag on Wednesday where he was asked about why Trevor Story and Jon Gray are still on the team and haven’t been traded yet.
From all indications, Story and Gray look like they are on their way out of Denver just from the facts that the Rockies aren’t in contention, both are free agents at the end of the season, and the Rockies don’t look like they will offer what either or both will command in free agency.
However, Saunders said that the Rockies “have no plans” to trade Story before the All-Star Game, which will take place in Denver on July 13.
Saunders says that he thinks that the Rockies may try to extend Gray but he still wouldn’t be surprised if he’s traded.
However, our colleague, Robert Murray, told us on our podcast nearly two weeks ago that he believes that Gray will be one of the first players traded this year.
There are a few reasons why the Rockies should trade Story and Gray before the All-Star break.
Chief among the reasons to trade both Trevor Story and Jon Gray is that the Rockies will get more return for them.
Entering Thursday, an acquiring team would get about 110 games out of Story and a team would get 20+ starts of Gray.
If a team (or teams) acquired them at the July 30 trade deadline (it’s July 30 this year, not July 31, like before), the acquiring team would get roughly 55 or 60 games out of Story and roughly 10-12 starts out of Gray.
If an acquiring team is getting double the playing time than they would be at the deadline, a team will give the Rockies more. And there are plenty of teams who are in need (or want) the best shortstop in baseball and a middle- to high-end starting pitcher.
But also, the Rockies should do it for their current minor leaguers. The Rockies might get some young guys in trades to slot in on their major league team and see them but they could also give some more playing time to younger players.
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Instead of platooning Brendan Rodgers, the Rockies could play him at shortstop every day. The Rockies could also give Garrett Hampson more of a look at second base (or shortstop). If Hampson was playing second base every day, the Rockies could see if Sam Hilliard or Ryan Vilade are ready to play some outfield positions for the team. Joshua Fuentes more and see what they have in him. After all, after a really slow start, he has played much better in recent weeks.
If the Rockies were to trade veteran first baseman C.J. Cron, Fuentes could see more playing time at first base (particularly if McMahon was playing third base every day) and they could give Connor Joe more playing time as well and see what they have.
If Charlie Blackmon (who has two player options coming up for the next two seasons) is traded, there’s even more opportunity for the Rockies to see what they have.
They could even turn to guys like Alan Trejo (once he comes off the IL in Triple-A), Wynton Bernard, Jameson Hannah, Elehuris Montero, or others and see what they have in Triple-A and/or at the major league level.
To move forward, the Rockies have to trade both of them and trade them ASAP. There’s nothing worse than being in the middle ground and being in limbo and the Rockies have been in that for nearly three years. It’s about time that they do a full rebuild and build it up the right way by making some smart moves for the future, not do a desultory build or teardown, as they have for a long time.