Colorado Rockies: The case for trading away Germán Márquez

DENVER, COLORADO - JULY 13: German Marquez #48 of the Colorado Rockies pitches during the 91st MLB All-Star Game at Coors Field on July 13, 2021 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
DENVER, COLORADO - JULY 13: German Marquez #48 of the Colorado Rockies pitches during the 91st MLB All-Star Game at Coors Field on July 13, 2021 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images) /

The MLB trade deadline is a week away and the Colorado Rockies have several highly coveted players that clubs around the league have shown interest in.

One such player is newly minted All-Star starting pitcher Germán Márquez, who the Rockies have said is off limits.

But are the Rockies making a huge mistake?

Here is the case for why the Colorado Rockies should trade Germán Márquez.

Sell when the stock is high

Stock Market 101 teaches to buy low and sell high, and the stock for Márquez is at an all-time high. After a slow start to begin the season where he was 1-3 with a 6.21 ERA, he is now 8-7 with a 3.50 ERA to go along with 119 strikeouts and only 44 walks in 118.1 innings pitched throughout 20 starts.

The 26-year-old is coming off his first All-Star appearance where he pitched a 1-2-3 inning. He was also three outs away from his first no-hitter earlier in the season when he pitched a one-hit shutout against the Pittsburgh Pirates in June.

More importantly for possible suitors and the Rockies’ front office is that he is only in the third year of a five-year/$43 million contract that will have $26 million remaining following this season and includes a mutual $16 million option in 2024.

A down year could be coming

If history is doomed to repeat itself, the Rockies have two recent examples of two frontline starters who had horrible seasons following breakout seasons to learn from.

In 2010, Ubaldo Jiménez had an unbelievable season (by Rockies’ pitching standards), going 19-8 with a 2.88 ERA, becoming the only Rockies’ pitcher throw a no-hitter and start in an All-Star Game, finishing third in the NL Cy Young Award. The next season, production dramatically dropped off as he went 6-9 in 21 starts with a 4.46 ERA before being traded to the Cleveland Indians at the deadline.

Even more recently, there is the example of current Rockies starter, Kyle Freeland. In 2018, Freeland led the Rockies to their second consecutive playoff birth by going 17-7 with a minuscule 2.85 ERA in 33 starts, finishing fourth in the Cy Young balloting.

More from Colorado Rockies News

Sadly, 2019 was not kind to Freeland when he went 3-11 with a 6.73 ERA in 22 starts. The season also included two trips to the Injured List and a midseason demotion to Triple-A Albuquerque. He has had bounced back somewhat the past two seasons but he still has not been that “Kyle Freeland Guy” on a regular basis that fans fell in love with in ’18.

It is no guarantee that Márquez will suffer the same fate as Jiménez and Freeland, but are the Rockies willing to gamble on losing out on a much bigger return in a trade in the next couple seasons if his production does take a downturn?

Three- to five-year rebuild 

It has become a common perception that the Rockies are, at a minimum, three years away from once again contending for the playoffs. Even if the Rockies decide to pick up his sixth season option, that would put him right at that magical third year where, if all the correct moves were made and the younger players developed, the Rockies would be back in the playoff picture.

dark. Next. Rumors: Yankees have "checked in" with Rockies on Trevor Story

Unfortunately, as we all have learned by now, the Rockies don’t have the best reputation for a strong farm system and making the smartest roster decisions. So unless Márquez is in the long-term plans beyond the 2024 season, it would be wise for the Rockies to move him before they are possibly paying some other club to take him off their hands in the upcoming years.