The Rockies are proving they are a true Denver, Colorado team. What do I mean by that? As anyone in the Denver area will tell you, the weather here lately has been crazy. The morning will bring clear, blue skies. By the time the afternoon hits, however, gray clouds fill the horizon as severe thunderstorms approach from the Rocky Mountains. In the evening,residents have been treated to a lot of rain and lightning across the metro area, along with flash flood warnings in various parts of the state.
Yes, the weather in Denver the last month has been a perfect illustration for the Rockies season; both as of late and as a whole.
I’m a stats guy. Here are some stats to back-up my theory of Denver weather being equivalent to Colorado Rockies baseball. Consider what a baseball fan sees as a good barometer of what makes a good team. Most will probably say how a team performs in one-run games. Others will say how a team performs in extra-inning games (very similar to one-run games, but not necessarily the same if you win or lose by two or more runs). And others will look at the runs scored vs. runs allowed stat.
Blind resume time. Let’s throw out some of those stats that correspond to what a baseball fan would judge their team by. First records in one-run games:
Team A: 19-12
Team B: 26-12
Team C: 14-17
Team D: 17-15
Now let’s do the same with extra-inning game records:
Team A: 5-3
Team B: 10-5
Team C: 1-5
Team D: 10-8
Finally, let’s compare the runs scored vs. runs allowed for these teams:
Team A: 427-416 = +11
Team B: 351-339 = +12
Team C: 421-422 = -1
Team D: 387-326 = +61
By the nature of my article, you can probably figure out that Team C is the Colorado Rockies (and no I didn’t choose them as Team “C” because of Colorado). They are obviously struggling compared to these other teams in all the categories. The other three clubs are teams the Rockies are competing with for playoff spots. Team A is the Arizona Diamondbacks (again, didn’t even realize the “A” could stand for Arizona). Team B is the San Francisco Giants and Team D is the Atlanta Braves, the current leader for the wildcard spot in the National League.
As you look over these stats you might think to yourself: the Rockies aren’t that much different statistically than the Diamondbacks, especially in the runs scored vs. runs allowed category. Things will turn around for the Rockies. Yes, the Rockies have a very similar differential when it comes to the runs scored and runs allowed stat to the D-Backs. But consider the other stats. Both teams have played 31 one-run games. The D-Backs have won five more games in those situations. Oh by the way, they are six games ahead of the Rockies for second in the NL West. Those one-run games make a big difference. I’m not even going to explain why the Giants (26-12 in one-run games) are in first in the NL West; 9.5 games ahead of the Rockies.
As the season enters the stretch run, teams play a lot of their games inside their own division. This gives some hope for teams to make a run and compete for the division. If the Rockies want to compete for the NL West crown, they’ll have to greatly improve on their 17-21 record within their own division. The Giants are 25-14, another reason why they are in the lead.
With the string of consecutive severe weather days finally over in the Denver area, residents here hope for nicer days filled with sun and blue skies. The same can be said about the Rockies. After much of the season has been filled with inconsistent baseball, the team is looking forward to putting together a string of blue sky type baseball to push the team back into contention for the final two months of the season.
About the Author
Written by Steve Folsom
Sports has always been my passion in life. I enjoy all sports but baseball is by far my favorite. I bring an analytical perspective to my sports consumption. Follow me on Twitter @Steven_Folsom.