The Colorado Rockies have been the worst team in baseball in the last six weeks as their 12-26 record is the worst in the sport since May 8.
Considering that they have teams like the Dodgers and Padres ahead of them in the standings, it will take a giant miracle for the Rockies to make it back into playoff contention, let alone actually make the playoffs, even with 12 teams making the playoffs.
However, there is one team that the Colorado Rockies can look at for some inspiration: the 2005 Houston Astros.
The 2005 Houston Astros were in a spot that the 2022 Colorado Rockies are in
In 2005, the Houston Astros were coming off of a 92-70 season. The Astros (who were in the National League at the time) made it to the playoffs in 2004 with the then-lone NL Wild Card spot and made it to Game 7 of the NLCS.
But they got off to a very slow start in 2005. In fact, they got off to a worse start than the Colorado Rockies in 2022.
Through their first 65 games, the 2005 Astros went 27-38, or one game worse than the 2022 Rockies. The Astros were in fifth place in the six-team NL Central, 14.5 games back for the NL Central lead and 9.5 games back of the Philadelphia Phillies in the NL Wild Card race.
But from game 66 through the end of the season, the Astros went 62-35, finishing the season with a record of 89-73. They won the NL Wild Card spot and went all the way to the World Series, their first and only World Series appearance until 2017.
A big reason why the Astros turned things around then was their offense. In their first 65 games, they only hit .243/.307/.387 with an average of 3.7 runs per game. Their team wRC+ was 80, or last in baseball. After that, they hit .265/.332/.421 with an average of 4.6 runs per game. That amounted to a 96 wRC+, which was 15th in baseball in that span.
For the Rockies to even get close to playoff contention, they will have to see more production with their offense and, particularly, in the power department.
They will have some more leeway with three NL Wild Card spots but two of the spots will almost certainly be occupied by either the Dodgers or Padres (whoever doesn’t win the NL West) and one of the Mets or Braves (whoever doesn’t win the NL East).
So in addition to the Giants and D-Backs in the NL West, the Milwaukee Brewers and St. Louis Cardinals, as of now, are the two teams that will likely be the biggest competition for the Rockies going forward … outside of the biggest competition of all: themselves.