Reid Fischer's World of Rants

Looking at the sports world through orange colored glasses

Posts Tagged ‘Carlos Gonzalez’

Is It April Yet?

Posted by mizzou1028 on January 4, 2011

 It’s been really depressing around here the past few months for us Denver sports fans.  The Broncos have just finished their worst season in more than 30 years, the Nuggets know their star player is getting traded and the Buffs failed to qualify for a bowl for the fourth time in the past five years.  At least the Avalanche are winning, but no one notices because the NHL doesn’t get any coverage.  That’s why I can’t wait for the calendar to turn to April, and we can get baseball season started.  Strange as it sounds, the Rockies are the best product in the Denver sports scene, and it may not even be close now that they have locked up their two best players through 2017.

In November the Rockies signed Troy Tulowitzki to a seven year $134 million deal.  They followed that up this week by agreeing to a seven year $80 million deal with Carlos Gonzalez.  What makes the Gonzalez deal so surprising is he is represented by Scott Boras, who is notorious for not allowing his players to accept hometown discounts.  A Boras client almost always lets himself get to free agency, where he can cash in a megadeal on the open market.  I say almost because Gonzalez is the only Boras client I can think of who has actually agreed to stay with his current team.  In any case, Rockies fans should be dancing in the streets celebrating these signings.  Sure the money is staggering, but the Rockies are finally doing what they refused to do for the first 15 years of their existence, lock up their star players.  Look at teams like the Royals, Twins, Padres and other smaller market clubs that never spend the money to retain their best players.  If the Rockies hadn’t made an effort to keep Tulo and CarGo, they would have surely been members of the Red Sox or Yankees in three years.

I find it laughable that national reaction to these signing is not positive.  After all the Rockies are doing what we continually criticize small market clubs for not doing: keeping their best players in the fold.   An ESPN.com poll finds that more than half of fans think this is a bad investment on the part of the Rockies.  I think the only reason that poll is slanted that way is because most national fans have no idea who Tulo and CarGo are.  The Rockies are never on national tv (zero regular season appearances in the last two years), so it’s no wonder people think the Rockies are spending money wildly.  The fact is that if either Tulowitzki or Gonzalez played for a big market team, especially in New York or Boston, they would be talked about as sure fire hall of famers.  Because they play in Colorado, national folks don’t think these are great players. 

This assertion is absurd because I would stack Tulowitzki up against any shortstop in baseball.  He is better defensively than Derek Jeter, has as much pop as Jimmy Rollins, and is in every way the definition of a team leader.  As for Gonzalez, he is a true five tool player.  He can play all three outfield positions flawlessly, can hit for power, and as he proved last season can be a legitimate triple crown candidate.  He is so highly thought of that he was traded twice for All-Stars (Dan Haren and Matt Holliday).  People nationally can think what they like, but I’ll take my chances with Gonzalez and Tulowitzki leading my offense for the next seven years.

Let’s just say that I can’t wait for opening day this year.  I see no reason why the Rockies can’t be a legitimate contender for years to come.  After all, we do need something to look forward to here in Denver.

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Holliday Follow Up

Posted by mizzou1028 on November 13, 2008

A couple of quick follow up thoughts on the trade that sent Matt Holliday to Oakland for Huston Street, Carlos Gonzalez, and Greg Smith:

– The Rockies are trying to portray Holliday as not being a team player and are trying to argue that they will be better team next year even though their best hitter and only game changer is gone.  Please, Dan O’Dowd, don’t insult our intelligence by trying to say the team is now better.  It may be better in two years if Gonzalez and Smith turn out to be as good at their potential indicates they could be, but the team is not better now.

– As for Holliday not being a team player, it’s hard to argue with O’Dowd on that point.  Holliday wrote his ticket out of town and put his full selfishness and greediness on display the instant he hired Scott Boras as his agent.  Players who hire Boras are seeking as much money as possible and NEVER re-sign with their current team for less.  The Rockies frankly couldn’t afford to keep Holliday, and we all knew that.  My issue is more with the timing of the trade and what the Rockies got (or didn’t get) in return.

– I do want to give Smith, Gonzalez, and Street the benefit of the doubt.  Smith did eat up a lot of innings last year in Oakland, and maybe we should give him a chance to see if he can cut his walks down, which he will have to do to be effective.  The Rockies need him to be a 2 of 3 starter, not the 4 or 5 starter he is now.  Gonzalez  has the tools to be a good center fielder, but he has yet to put it together at the Major League level.  If he can meet his full potential and improve his woeful on base percentage, the trade may prove to be ok for the Rockies in 2-3 years.  If he is a bust, the trade is a full failure.  As for Street, it is unknown whether the Rockies will keep him or try to spin him for a starter.  If he stays, he will compete with Manny Corpas for the closer role, but the Rockies should be aware of his less than promising injury history.  Street has the talent and to his credit does not walk many hitters, but he has yet to prove he can stay healthy.  That must change if he is to be effective in the Rockies’ bullpen. 

– To those ripping A’s General Manager Billy Beane regarding his acquisition of Holliday: ask yourself who you’re ripping.  Beane has routinely made bold moves to improve the A’s.  It is unknown whether the A’s will keep Holliday after this year, but they knew they needed an elite power bat to keep pace with the Angels in the AL West.  Holliday is a game changer, and the A’s will benefit from his presence in the middle of the order.  If nothing else, the A’s will get two high compensatory picks in next year’s draft if Holliday bolts as a free agent.

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