Best Hitter: OF Carlos Gonzalez. CarGo was brilliant once again for the Rockies, leading the team in RBI and hits, posting .303 with 22 homers.
Best Starter: N/A. No pitcher can claim superiority with last year’s pitching. The starters were at the bottom of the majors in most categories and no starter had an ERA sub 4.4.
Best Reliever: RP Rex Brothers was a spark for the bullpen. The 25-year-old led the team in K’s (83) and finished with an 8-2 record with a 3.86 ERA.
Breakout Year: OF Dexter Fowler. The center-fielder put it together in 2012, raising his average from .266 to .300. At 26, there is still time to improve for Fowler.
Best Rookie: 3B Jordan Pacheco. The New Mexico kid played close to a full year in the bigs and hit .309 with 54 RBI. Pacheco will have the pressure to be just as good this year, especially with the possibility of moving parts.
History – Jamie Moyer made history with the Rockies when he became the oldest MLB pitcher to earn a victory at 49. Moyer was released by the Rockies in June after a 2-5 record and a 5.70 ERA.
Pitching – It what has become a disheartening theme for the Rockies, The pitching core was consistently dreadful. The Rockies started 14 pitchers throughout the year, the group put up a 5.81 ERA, dead last in the majors. The worst part was that Jorge De La Rosa was only able to start three games due to Tommy John surgery rehab. Complete pitching stats
Hitting – The 2012 team did a fine job at the plate. The Rockies had five everyday players hit above .300 including Eric Young Jr., Jordan Pacheco, Chris Nelson, Carlos Gonzalez and Dexter Fowler. Troy Tulowitzki managed to hit .287 with 8 home runs in a season cut short by a groin injury. However Todd Helton hit a career low .238 and played his fewest games (69) since his rookie year. Helton is still deciding if he will return for this season. Complete hitting stats
Injuries – Pitchers Juan Nicasio, Jonathan Sanchez and De La Rosa all had their seasons severely limited due to injuries. As mentioned, Helton and Tulo both had injury-plagued years. Ramon Hernandez also was limited leading to the emergence of rookie Willin Rosario.
Regime Change– In November, Jim Tracy resigned as manager of the Rockies. Despite the team setting a franchise high for losses, Tracy was expected to return for the final year on his contract. Tracy’s decision was to the displeasure of many the players including CarGo, Fowler and Jeff Francis.
The Rockies named their former shortstop, Walt Weiss, as the new manager. Weiss, 48, played for 14 MLB seasons and was the manager for Regis Jesuit High School in Denver last year. The deal was surprising because of the one-year contract and Weiss’s only MLB coaching experience being some time spent as a Rockies minor league instructor and scout. Weiss is said to bring a toughness to the team as Colorado’s sixth manger in history.
Free Agency– The Rockies have remained conservative in free agency. They resigned Jeff Francis to a one year deal and De La Rosa picked up his 2013 option. The Rockies have no other players in free agency and will likely rely on their young players to fill holes.
Youth– Injuries forced the Rockies to play many of it’s young players more than intended, their were encouraging signs for the position players.
3B Jordan Pacheco hit .309, the best average on the team with more than 100 games played. C Rosario led the team in home runs with 28. 2B DJ LeMahieu hit .297 in 81 games and Josh Rutledge had eight home runs and 37 RBI in 73 games.
Trades – Dec – Acquired RHP Wilton Lopez from Houston for RHP Alex White and Alex Gillingham.
Rockies hope Lopez can be effective in late innings. The 29-year-old lefty is a high groundball low walk pitcher.
Jan – RHP Guillermo Moscoso and LHP Josh Outman from Oakland for OF Seth Smith
Moscoso and Outman were both disappointments in 2012, Moscoso has moved on to Kansas City.
Nov – INF Matt Wheeler from Arizona for LHP Matt Reynolds.
This move was made to provide depth in the middle infield for the Rockies and help stockpile assets to acquire a starting pitcher.
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