We are back from the All-Star break, settled is the Home Run Derby and enough of the season has played out, so we know who is who this year. Now the winners are buyers, the losers are sellers and it’s the front office’s time to shine. Let’s check in with the NL West, who is being sold, and the buyer’s wish lists.
Selling the NL West: Colorado Rockies
The Rockies are 37-59 (.385) after their series with the Astros. As the worst team in the NL, they must cut salaries and trade any expiring contracts to stock the farm system with MLB-ready prospects and rookies. Here is what the Rockies have to trade and what they hope to get back.
Charlie Blackmon is 37 years old and is set to be a UFA at the end of the season. He is slashing. .265/.347/.769 with five homers. Blackmon can still contribute to a contender and would be very valuable off the bench for the Braves or the Rays. The left-handed hitter is hitting .277 against right-handed pitchers, and all of his five home runs came against righties. Any organization’s top 30 prospects should be sufficient for Blackmon.
Colorado outfielder Kris Bryant is in the second year of a seven-year, $182 million contract. The Rockies will need to dump the 31-year-old this season before he declines further. He still has some value, slashing .254/.332/.715 with eight homers in 63 games this year. Bryant also has World Series experience, which could be valuable to the Rays, Rangers, or Brewers. A top-10 prospect from any of them should get the solid veteran in the lineup.
C.J. Cron is slashing .251/.296/.762 with 10 homers this season. The 33-year-old is in the final year of his contract as well. The Yankees like aging veterans and may be interested. A package including catcher Elias Diaz could yield two or three top-50 Yankee prospects.
CJ Cron hits a Grand Slam (9) to give the Rockies a 5-3 lead.
— MLB Updates (@MLBNews1234) July 16, 2023
Rockies outfielder Randal Grichuk is another expiring contract. He could yield a decent prospect in return; he is hitting .300 even on the year in 200 at-bats. The Brewers or Marlins could be buyers for Grichuk as a rental, and the Yankees have been linked to him as well.
The Rockies could use players like Justin Lawrence and his 1.08 WHIP and 51 K in 49 innings to entice a trade for anyone mentioned above. Moving these players for five to seven moderate prospects and a few platoon players will help build something in Colorado in a few years.