In the Rockpile: Mediocrity is infectious

Colorado pitcher Clay Mortensen looks the way Rockies fans are feeling these days -- exasperated. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)

The last week in Colorado Rockies baseball has proved fruitful for their postseason chances. With the All-Star break approaching, the Rockies managed to do a lot of good things the last week:

  • Won their series against the New York Yankees
  • Beat the Chicago Cubs in a make-up game
  • Won their series against the Chicago White Sox
  • Aaron Cook got his first win since returning

Wait … sorry, that is what should have happened, but didn’t. Instead, the last week saw the Rox lose series to the Yankees and ChiSox, as well as the game against the Cubbies. Cook didn’t get his first win because of the infamous lack of offense. Yeah, that has returned.

Manager Jim Tracy isn’t putting up with it. “Players have to realize the fact there is no scholarship program,” said Tracy. “This is not a feel-good situation where trying really hard and you’re failing, or doing this or that, is going to be tolerated.” I’m glad Tracy is stepping outside his norms by putting guys on notice that these struggles need to stop now or you may just find yourself in triple-A or not even in Colorado.

The front office made an amazing move this week by trading pitcher Bruce Billings for Oakland A’s infielder Mark Ellis, some greenbacks and the frequent tag on, the player-to-be-named-later. Ellis is 34 and batting sub .300 … which is exactly what this club needed: A guy who is batting like damn near everyone else on the roster.

Their standing in the NL West race in third place is befitting of their middle-of-the-pack ratings: 17th in batting average and 19th in ERA.

Where are the division-leading San Francisco Giants and second-place Arizona Diamondbacks at? Arizona is 18th in BA and 21st in ERA, both below Colorado. The Giants are 25th in BA and 4th in ERA. The Giants have a weaker offense than the Rockies, but have amazing pitchers in Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain and the bearded bullpen bully, closer Brian Wilson.

I’ll say it for the umpteenth time, the offense needs to find itself because they don’t have “it” right now. That horse is dead, has been dead and so it shall remain.

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