Denver, CO. Word has come down from the Colorado Rockies that they will continue to utilize the four man piggyback pitching rotation in 2013. Fans in Denver may moan when they hear this, but based on the current success with the rotation the idea has some legs. Many may find it actually a bad thing that the Rockies are having success as the season draws to a close, but as fans we will just have to make due with the decisions the front office is making. Let’s break down how the rotation will likely look in 2013 for the Colorado Rockies.
The starting four in the rotation will likely be Jorge De La Rosa, Jhoulys Chacin, Jeff Francis and Drew Pomeranz. This leaves a pretty impressive group to anchor the piggyback rotation with potentially Tyler Chatwood, Christian Friedrich, Alex White and Juan Nicasio taking over for the starting rotation. This gives the Rockies the ability to match up a switch it up capability. They will likely be able to start a right handed pitcher and then slide in a left handed piggy back pitcher and vice versa with a left handed starter. The Rockies main concern is the injuries to starting pitchers here in Denver at altitude. Since the Colorado Rockies inception, injuries to starters have been an issue.
The interesting part of the four man rotation is the effect it has on the bullpen. The pairing concept not only gives starters normal rest before pitching again, but it also gives the piggyback pitchers the same amount of rest. If successful, Jim Tracy will have the ability to use strategic matchups in the late innings of games. The back end of the bullpen has been overworked this season, but that is due to the lack of success early in the season. Matt Belisle and Rex Brothers have pitched well but are starting to wear down, pitching too many innings. Next season could allow them to pitch in normal situations and lessen their innings. Rafael Betancourt will likely still be the closer next year as Rex Brothers is not ready yet, but should assume the closer role in 2014.
So I guess it is what it is in 2013 and we as Rockies fans will have to make the choice to either support the Colorado Rockies or walk away until they can prove they are not just a winning team, but a winning franchise.
Denver Sports Chat – Kris Loco