Can you picture the Colorado Rockies without superstar shortstop Troy Tulowitzki? You might have to start. The trade rumors surrounding Tulo have resurfaced. And he’s not the only big name being whispered. The injured Michael Cuddyer and outfielder Carlos Gonzalez have also garnered talks.
Despite Tulo reaching rockstar status in Denver, his recent interview with MLB.com’s Thomas Harding indicates Tulo is tired of losing. If Colorado can field a competitive ballclub, he’s happy to stay. If not, he’ll be sitting down with organization to discuss a future that doesn’t likely include the Mile High City.
So why trade Tulo? The Rockies’ front office isn’t acting as if winning is priority right now. For Tulo it is. If current trends continue, and there’s no immediate reason to think they’ll change, Tulo’s going to force his way out of Denver. While in the midst of a career season, Tulo could fetch quite a bit on the trade market.
Kenny Rogers once said, “know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em.” Tulo’s value will likely never be higher than it is right now. Cashing out would get you the biggest return.
As for Cuddyer, it may be too late. At age 35, Cuddy has shown he can still hit the stripes off a ball. That’s a huge upside and he may serve a great role in the American League as a consistent designated hitter. For a team pushing for the playoffs this year, he’s perfect. Last year of a contract, still very productive, and when healthy has Silver Slugger skill. Sure, the Rockies aren’t likely to get as much for Cuddy as they’d hope, but some is better than none. Remember, Cuddyer hasn’t indicated he’s planning on resigning with Colorado this fall/winter.
Carlos Gonzalez, while on and off the DL the past few seasons, is arguably one of the best outfielders in baseball today. The Rockies could cash out on Cargo, and look to Charlie Blackmon and Corey Dickerson as the foundation for their future outfield. In the absence of Cargo, Dickerson has shown he can produce and roam left field effectively, and at a discounted rate. Cargo should be heading out of Denver this season in return for some much needed pitching. While the Jeff Samardzija sweepstakes were a long shot, there’s still a guy named David Price in Tampa worth running at.
While none of these moves may be very popular with an already weary fan base, it could jump start the Rockies’ franchise into a direction they haven’t been in years: winning. And nothing will appease a fan base like winning.
So can you really picture the Colorado Rockies without their big name superstars? I can, and I’m not hating the sight. With 15 days left until the deadline and plenty of rumors flying around baseball, it’s hard to say which ones are legit. I’m here to tell you that losing Tulo, Cuddy or Cargo won’t be the worst thing for the Colorado Rockies’ future, and with another last place finish in site, the future’s all I’ve got.