Thursday, October 21, 2021

Rocky faces back into contention on a steep, rocky road

PHOENIX – If you want to gauge the mood of Rockies players at the end of the season, ask pitcher Kyle Freeland.

The Denver-born native says what others won’t. Freeland may not be realistic, but he speaks from the heart.

During the early days of spring training, when baseball pundits were picking the Rockies to lose anywhere from 92 to 104 games, Freeland succumbed.

“I mean, I think that should be our only motivating factor,” he said. “That’s the kind of position I like to be in: being an underdog, being someone who the general public thinks isn’t going to perform at all. As a whole team, we’re going to be in this season. I am using it as a chip on my shoulder to propel us forward and shock the world and prove the skeptics wrong.”

Of course, that didn’t happen.

Despite Freeland’s fightin’ words, the Rockies were never good enough to run into the playoffs this season. And, despite what owner Dick Monfort said on February 1 after trading Rockies star shortstop Nolan Arenado to St. Louis, chances were always long that they would be a .500 team in 2021.

“I really believe in my heart that this is a very talented team that has done poorly over the years,” Monfort said. “I’m not even going to count last year because it was a tough year, but I think we did poorly….. This could be the challenge they need. They need to go ahead and fill this void. needed.”

Colorado entered the final two games of the season in Arizona with a 74–85 record, 31 games behind first place San Francisco in the National League West.

But that reality has not quenched Freeland’s resolve.

Nation World News Desk
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