Colorado Rockies: Dick Monfort predicts 94 wins; is he crazy?

Colorado Rockies owner Dick Monfort made an interesting prediction, stating that the Rockies would win 94 games in 2020.  Is Monfort being a homer or does he have a point?

The Colorado Rockies have had an interesting offseason.  They angered star 3B Nolan Arenado when they explored potential trades, extended Trevor Story for his two years, and made zero notable MLB signings.  Despite all that, Dick Monfort had this to offer about his outlook for the Rockies 2020 season.

“In ’08, with basically the exact same team (as ’07), we won 74 games and lost 88,” Dick Monfort said. “But like a great American hero, Forrest Gump, once said, ‘(Stuff) happens.’ And that’s what happened in ’08, because in ’09 we won 92 and lost 70. Most of the people I talk to that were on those teams say the ’09 team was our greatest team.

“I interpolated ’07, ’08 and ’09 — I had an analytical staff go through and interpolate those numbers — and so in 2020, we’ll win 94 games and lose 68.”

At first, it seems like the analysts put together something similar to CreedThoughts.com but could the Colorado Rockies actually win 94 games?  Based on last seasons win total of 71 and the turmoil surrounding the team this offseason, you probably think of them closer to the rebuilding Giants than the pennant chasing Dodgers. That being said the Rockies don’t need that many things to break their way to approach or even exceed that win total.

Infield

3B Nolan Arenado and SS Trevor Story makes up the best left-side infield in all of baseball.  Arenado and Story together were the 13th and 14th best players in baseball last year and were worth nearly 12 fWAR.  Ryan McMahon is one small tweak away from unlocking his true upside and Brendan Rodgers got his first taste of MLB pitching and could be ready for a breakdown.  Those four players give Colorado the potential for one of the best infields in all of baseball.

Outfield

Charlie Blackmon is the outfielder everyone knows in Colorado and while his time as a star has probably past him, he’s still a solid option to put up 2-3 WAR.  David Dahl showed promise in 100 games putting up a 110 wRC+ 1.4 WAR.  Over a full season, he could match the production of Blackmon.  The remaining OF ABs resemble a black hole and the options aren’t encouraging with Ian Desmond, Garrett Hampson, and Raimel Tapia.  Tapia is still only 25 and has some gaudy defensive numbers.  Tapia’s approach could use some work as he never walks (5% BB Rate in 2019) and hits the ball on the ground a ton.  Maybe Tapia or a spring training invitee can seize an OF job and get some production because at this point even replacement level would be an upgrade.

Pitching

The Rockies seem to have finally found a collection of pitchers who can have success at Coors Field.  German Marquez and Jon Gray were both excellent at the top of the rotation totaling 3.4 and 3.1 fWAR respectively.  LHP Kyle Freeland was a down-ballot Cy Young candidate in 2018 but struggled in 2019.  A return to form would give the Rockies their own mini big three that could be dangerous in a short postseason series and lets the Rockies trot out a talented pitcher most of the week.  Jeff Hoffman and Anthony Senzatella are pitchers in their 20s who could be solid at the back-end of the rotation, especially Hoffman who has the potential to be a monster.

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Are the Colorado Rockies going to win 94 games?  More than likely not. Vegas is skeptical as the over/under win total for the Rockies sits at just 74.5 wins. That being said the Rockies made the playoffs in back to back seasons with largely the same roster.  The NL West is more competitive with the Diamondbacks and Padres looking ready to compete for a Wild Card. Dick Monfort may sound crazy with his prediction but the Rockies have the talent to make him look smart.

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