Tonight’s teleforum with O’Dowd and Monfort

December 14, 2011 | 2:21 pm | 47  

Not sure I will be able to listen to this tonight. If anyone does, please post synopsis.

Thanks!

Anything particular you guys hope or expect to hear?

 

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47 Comments »

  • rockymountainhigh | December 14, 2011 | 2:52 pm

    I’d like to know if DOD and Montfort will still look for good pitchers if they succeed in signing Cuddyer.

  • rockymountainhigh | December 14, 2011 | 2:59 pm

    Also ask about the new uniforms(?). Saw on Rockies official tweet that they will unveil it at the FanFest after a tweeter heard about gray pinstripes. I’d rather have purple pinstripes if the design is still the same.

  • progmatinee | December 14, 2011 | 4:24 pm

    New greys would be nice. I hope they get rid of the pins on the roadies altogether. But make the pinstripes on the home jerseys purple instead of black.

  • rockiesrule | December 14, 2011 | 4:48 pm

    If we are looking at another Carlos; why not Quentin? He is coming into his prime and the Chisox are supposedly retooling.

  • Ike | December 14, 2011 | 5:30 pm

    rockiesrule,

    I’m not sure what the price would be, but I completely agree with you about Quentin. It would see to be a good fit, at least short term.

  • Ike | December 14, 2011 | 5:34 pm

    I just hope something comes from the call that helps me shake my negativity. I think I’m ready to transition so bring on the unicorns and pixie dust.

  • progmatinee | December 14, 2011 | 7:11 pm

    O’Dowd is basically saying Iannetta, Stewart and Smith all share a attribute that he is tired of. I think they’re all way laid back. Expect Smith to be moved.

  • Eric M. | December 14, 2011 | 8:19 pm

    Prog is right. I actually asked DOD to explain the potential signing of Cuddyer for 9+million a year rather than putting that money toward a starting pitcher when, over a given season, Smith puts up similar numbers. I understood Cuddyer’s versatility and Smith’s inability to hit lefties, but just wanted justification paying a guy with similar numbers to Smith that much more money.

    He basically stated that he wanted people who wanted to win as a team, held others accountable, and were extremely competitive.

    I take it that Smith wasn’t much of a leader and that Cuddyer has a fiery side to him.

    What I found extremely interesting was the question before mine asked DOD about the trade rumors in the media and how they affect the outcomes, to which DOD explained that they actually had staff members read through all of them for each team and relay them to him. Then then contact teams to clarify or have to clarify rumors about their own players to other teams.

    Interesting.

    Oh, and he stated that other than the Diamondbacks, he thought the Rockies had the deepest staff in the NL West (even if they lacked a true number 1). Sounds like they plan on moving Chatwood to the bullpen too.

  • Ike | December 14, 2011 | 8:20 pm

    I’m not sure it will hold, but I now believe that the Rockies will have a superb 2012 campaign. #4 starters and change in culture will overcome any deficit created by not having a LF, 3B, 2B, an ace or a coaching staff capable of leadership. It feels good to be positive again.

  • progmatinee | December 14, 2011 | 8:33 pm

    Eric you had a very good question.

    I felt they skirted a lot of the questions that tried to lay accountability on coaches, management and decision makers.

    Laid 75%+ of the blame on the players.

    I really think its ironic that through 2006-2008 they claimed it was the greatest clubhouse in the history of the Western World. Then they get rid of Torrealba, get rid of Holliday, get rid of Atkins, get rid of Hawpe. All 4 of which were key personnel to the 2007 WS and the players that were tasked with replacing them are Iannetta, Stewart and Smith aka the 2011 scapegoats!

    Hmmm. Who to blame for that? Got a mirror handy, Dan?

  • Agbayani | December 14, 2011 | 9:11 pm

    Here’s the depressing truth:

    go to baseballthinkfactory and scroll down to a “projected standings” link posted at about 1:30 this afternoon. (I won’t post the link since that would send this comment to spam filter limbo)

    The link is to the keeper of one of the popular projection systems, this one called CAIRO. I can explain the idea behind these systems later if folks question them. They’re not perfect but they’re the best we have. Just know that things are very preliminary since the rosters are far, far from settled.

    But as things stand today, here’s the NL West:

    Giants 88-74
    Dbacks 86-76
    Padres 81-81
    Dodgers 79-83
    Rockies 76-86

    Yep. Projects to be a 76-win team.

    Q. Hey, but if we sign Cuddyer doesn’t that make a difference?

    A. Sure. About a game better. Not because Cuddyer is better than Seth Smith, but because he’ll be projected to play more than Smith, taking at bats away from completely useless players like EY Jr. So call it 77 wins.

    As for the truly asinine comment that the club suffered based on lack of fiery personalities:

    1. Ty Wigginton was brought in as a veteran, fiery leader.
    2. Jason Giambi’s clubhouse presence has presided over two of the most complete, colossal September collapses that I’ve ever seen.
    3. Captain Kirkish emotional Clint Hurdle was fired in favor of Spockish Jim Tracy’s calming demeanor.
    4. The ultimate anti-hero, Todd Helton, had his contract extended even though the team has always admitted that he is not an emotive leader type.

    When an NHL team really, really sucks, the management makes sure to keep a world-class goon or two on the roster to at least give the fans an entertaining fight every night. I guess that’s the Rockies’ plan: watch fiery players get tossed by umpires for arguing balls and strikes! What better reason to renew your season tix for a 76-win team!!
    4.

  • Mike Raysfan | December 14, 2011 | 9:21 pm

    Interesting stuff Agbayani. Can’t wait to see what really happens. I’m really struggling with the Padres(81)wins ahead of the Dodgers and Rockies.

    Unless something major happens with the starting staff and a couple of the young guys have a pretty good season I’m setting my expectation to be around 75-80 wins. The Padres will probably be in there too.

    Prog, going into the start of last season it was still claimed to be one of the best club houses. We even had a thread or two about it on here. Players wanted to be here.

  • Julian | December 14, 2011 | 10:57 pm

    Agbayani, are you surprised by the prediction? At this point, we’re a team with a lot of holes: 2B, 3B, a right handed outfielder, one or two starting pitchers, a lefy reliever. What we do have is a lot of money to spend and some really good prospects who might fill in a hole or two at some point in 2012 or 2013. So, I hope that the team starts spending it’s available money. If I were DOD I’d be focusing on the best starting pitchers who can be signed for one year. Then I’d try to find some role players who can effectively (say about a .270 average) fill some of the holes under one year contracts until some prospects show up, and a lefty reliever. I don’t think that 2012 will be our year, but if we don’t hamstring ourselves, 2013 and 2014 might be our years.

  • Agbayani | December 15, 2011 | 1:22 am

    Julian, not surprised at all.

    I really see no reason to spend on a guy like Cuddyer since I don’t see any reasonable chance of contending next year. By the following year there will be better free agents to sign or better deals to make, and we’ll have a much better sense of whether the young pitchers and minor league position players are ready to make an impact. If they are going to spend I’d rather it be on a younger player or two, or on a one-year deal guy (for example, I think Scutaro has accepted arbitration, so he could be traded for and only cost the Rockies a one-year commitment).

  • progmatinee | December 15, 2011 | 7:09 am

    If you think they’re so far from a first place team what would be the point in 1 year contracts? Wouldn’t that just prevent player developement for the future?

    Lets say they sign a couple players to 1 year contracts and the team has a marked improvement as a result. At the pace the Rockies have historically moved on FAs do you think they’d be in position to improve upon that if they had to 1)resign those players to another 1 year contract or 2)find FAs to replace the new guys leaving?

    At some point you have to make a multiyear commitment to prevent having to fight over the same player yet again. IMO the cutting bait on Wigginton was sort of stupid. He had a bad year. That happens. He’s going to have a much better year this year, guarantee it. Now we’re left trying to find someone to fill his position? How silly.

  • miketober | December 15, 2011 | 7:29 am

    I don’t have the keys to the clubhouse, so I don’t really know what goes on in there. But there is a difference between laid back as in you don’t care, and appearing laid back while you quietly go about doing your job. Stewart always seemed to me to be in the first category, Smith in the second. His numbers clearly show he has done his job, at least against righties. Maybe he needs to do cartwheels after every extra base hit to show the right attitude. It sounds like more scapegoating to me.

  • progmatinee | December 15, 2011 | 7:39 am

    The way O’Dowd described a group of players was “junior varsity” and I noted a frequent reference to “men”, such as “I am looking for grown men to fill these positions.” Inferring that what we have here were “boys”. He said it enough it made an impression on me during the call anyway. I didn’t write down notes this time though so I don’t have a direct quote.

    I’ll agree there is a lot of scapegoating going on. But some of it is deserved.

    Back in 2008 before we got Cargo (and knew that Holliday would be moved), I thought Smith would become the Rockies future #3 hitter. I like his game a lot but truthfully he has not improved since 2009.

  • miketober | December 15, 2011 | 7:59 am

    Prog, against righties there is not much room for improvement. Against lefties, I agree there is a hole to be filled. And Seth struck out far too many times last year.

    The whole boys to men thing is interesting. I wonder are they whining about the food, snapping towels in the shower, or what? Maybe cliques are forming .

    IMHO Smith needs to be hitting #2. But JT seems to think #2 should be occupied by a light hitter (e.g. Herrera) in case he needs to bunt, which is curious because JT never bunts.

  • Rich M | December 15, 2011 | 8:14 am

    I saw somewhere that the Twins/Willingham deal was rumored to be $21m over three years – that seems like a huge bargain – where were the Rockies? Since I would have preferred the Hammer to both Cuddyer and Beltran, this is very disappointing for me.

    Julian for the 100th time free agent starting pitchers that have any other options will NOT sign with the Rockies. That means if they are any good they they will sign somewhere else. The only way to acquire starting pitchers in the #2 to #3 category is to trade for them while they are still under team control ala Gio Gonzalez, Jurrgens, Danks, etc.

    Really do not understand the Seth Smith bashing here and elsewhere that is taking place right now. The guy was the Rockies third/fourth best hitter in 2011, has been very consistent and in my view plays a decent left field – what else do you expect to find with the Monforts’ manure budget?

    2nd base – we enough baseball bodies, someone has to be able to hold down the job.

    3rd base – it is now obvious that the Rockies will wait to see if Arenado can take control at 3rd.

    Left Field RH Power Bat – well after Willingham I have officially given up all hope that DanO will actually try to solve this three year running problem.

    Starting Pitching – has to be traded for or developed internally.

    Will someone start paying me to do DanO’s job – I know that I could be more effect and productive than what we have seen so far this off season.

  • rockymountainhigh | December 15, 2011 | 8:29 am

    I mentioned in another thread if we wanted some attitude, go get Carlos Zambrano. Nobody commented on that idea.

    DOD also did not like Huston Street which was why he got moved quickly at a bargain price.

    Renck mentioned that Wiggy was a bit moody about lack of playing time but acted “professional” about it. Wiggy also couldn’t hit on RISP situations n he didn’t want to be accountable for it.

    Those who haven’t heard Tulo has been personally recruiting Cuddyer.

    I put little stock in CAIRO system cuz it does not account for a lot of intangibles. DLR will be a major factor. Nicasio could end up pitching the whole year. Arenado fast emerging going on the fast track like Justin Upton n Evan Longoria. No way anybody can do worse at 3b than the 3B committee last year.

    Unnoticed is the fact that Ramon Hernandez is among major league leaders in throwing out would be stealers.

  • progmatinee | December 15, 2011 | 9:18 am

    The Zambrano idea, yeah he is firey but there is a huge difference between being firey against the opposition or umpires (Torrealba or Nyjer Morgan, for example) and being firey against your own dugout like Zambrano.

    Whatever is wrong in the club house mix, I find it really unfortunate that through bad play on the field and bad decisions from management that only 5 years after the WS appearance this team will quite possibly have only Helton and Tulo as hold overs from that team. Am I missing someone?

    Thats just awfully too much turnover, IMO.

  • Mike Raysfan | December 15, 2011 | 9:22 am

    Agbayani I think you know I’m all for Scutaro. The problem may now be the Red Sox sent Jed Lowrie to Houston for Melancon.

  • rockymountainhigh | December 15, 2011 | 10:59 am

    The Twitter universe says Michael Cuddyer will reach an agreement with the Rockies by the end of today. From what I’ve been told, the sides continue to negotiate but the end of today may not be feasible. Terms aren’t known, but it could be lucrative: Cuddyer was reported to have a three-year deal for around $25 million from the Twins on the table. I’m reading the Mariners and Reds also have approached Cuddyer.
    If or when it does happen, don’t be surprised if left-handed hitting Seth Smith is dealt quickly. Such a deal would clear a crowded outfield, and it would be the best way for the Rockies to fill other holes, especially pitching.
    Whatever the Rockies cleared in trading pitcher Huston Street to the Padres and infielder Ian Stewart to the Cubs will be spent on Cuddyer, or another outfielder if the Rockies go in that direction (such as Carlos Beltran).
    Smith ranks as the best hope for acquiring a pitcher capable of 200 innings to help the rotation along until Jorge De La Rosa completes his comeback from Tommy John left elbow surgery, which should be sometime around June. Lower-cost options such as Kevin The Twitter universe says Michael Cuddyer will reach an agreement with the Rockies by the end of today. From what I’ve been told, the sides continue to negotiate but the end of today may not be feasible. Terms aren’t known, but it could be lucrative: Cuddyer was reported to have a three-year deal for around $25 million from the Twins on the table. I’m reading the Mariners and Reds also have approached Cuddyer.
    If or when it does happen, don’t be surprised if left-handed hitting Seth Smith is dealt quickly. Such a deal would clear a crowded outfield, and it would be the best way for the Rockies to fill other holes, especially pitching.
    Whatever the Rockies cleared in trading pitcher Huston Street to the Padres and infielder Ian Stewart to the Cubs will be spent on Cuddyer, or another outfielder if the Rockies go in that direction (such as Carlos Beltran).
    Smith ranks as the best hope for acquiring a pitcher capable of 200 innings to help the rotation along until Jorge De La Rosa completes his comeback from Tommy John left elbow surgery, which should be sometime around June. Lower-cost options such as Kevin Millwood, Jeff Francis or recently non-tendered Joe Saunders will come into play, also.
    As for free-agent right-hander Hiroki Kuroda, the chances of such a signing are doubtful considering what the Rockies will spend on the outfielder., Jeff Francis or recently non-tendered Joe Saunders will come into play, also.
    As for free-agent right-hander Hiroki Kuroda, the chances of such a signing are doubtful considering what the Rockies will spend on the outfielder.

    Source: Thomas Harding on MLB.com.

  • Mike Raysfan | December 15, 2011 | 11:54 am

    It’s been previously reported by LA News sources that Kurado doesn’t want to come here. Will Saunders be a low cost option? I thought one of the biggest reason the Dback’s didn’t re-sign him was cost?

    I guess most Rockies fans will be happy with this news.

  • Mike Raysfan | December 15, 2011 | 12:13 pm

    RMH are you reading the other stuff now being said? wow

  • Mike Raysfan | December 15, 2011 | 12:27 pm

    So if you beleive the alter rumor world of twitter Cuddyer is most likely coming here and Kuroda is heading to the Yankees

  • Bill | December 15, 2011 | 2:08 pm

    I’ve been away, either physically or mentally, most of the month because of family matters so have missed most of these discussions. Of all the guys mentioned for the outfield, i.e. Willingham, Cuddyer or Beltran I like Cuddyer the best. With the exception of 2011 he’s been a major contributor to a winning team and can play multiple positions.

    I’m not a Seth Smith hater but I believe his position should be pinch hitter and DH when needed. He was great in that role but really seemed to day dream in the outfield and more than once seemed to give lazy efforts in the outfield. But when he was mainly used as a pinch-hitter I loved him and I think he would be better in that role than Giambi.

    One of the reasons that Dod and J. Tracy say they want Giambi is because of his influence in the clubhouse but if the clubhouse was so dysfunctional last year how positive and influence could he be?

  • Mike Raysfan | December 15, 2011 | 2:46 pm

    Seems like all is quiet now? Where will Cuddyer go? Rockies? Phillies? Or in the end stay home? Ahhh the rumors on twitter.

  • jaredean | December 15, 2011 | 3:02 pm

    Anywhere to get a transcript of that call? Anyone record it?

  • Pooter | December 15, 2011 | 3:13 pm

    Did Dealing Dan go on Christmas vacation already?

  • egossage | December 15, 2011 | 6:04 pm

    I’m guessing he signs with philly

  • progmatinee | December 15, 2011 | 6:42 pm

    Just look at Philly. They have amazingly talented OF youngsters in D. Brown and Mayberry (probably both better than any OF prospect COL has) plus they have Hunter Pence, Victorino, and Ibanez and they don’t sit around contented. Seriously, if they sign Cuddyer..man oh man really showing how to committ to winning.

  • Agbayani | December 15, 2011 | 7:56 pm

    miketober, you mentioned that Smith seems laid back while Stewart sometimes just seemed to not care.

    I disagree. I always thought Stewart seemed to overthink things, but I never saw a lack of effort. On the other hand, there were a number of balls hit to RF last year in which Smith just didn’t seem to put out a full effort. So I can see how Smith can infuriate a manager.

    I won’t repeat the same stuff I saw purplerow run earlier this week about finding a platoon partner for Smith, but I will second that notion: it’s a far cheaper solution, and likely just as effective as some of the higher-priced alternatives.

    As for signing guys to one-year contracts: I like the idea because you don’t get stuck with a guy you don’t want if your prospects actually develop. Scutaro at 2B for a year? Great, let’s see if LeMahieu or somebody else steps up to claim the position in 2013. Same thing for 3B and Arenado. The last thing we need is a 3 year deal on a Beltran in which he could easily be a dead weight the team needs to carry in 2014 at a high salary.

  • Julian | December 15, 2011 | 8:49 pm

    I agree with Agbayani. A platoon partner for Smith may make for an effective outfield option at a fairly low price. If we hold onto Smith, and Wheeler continues to develop and appears ready to be a Rockie by July, we could then trade Smith at the trade deadline for another piece that we need at that time.

    Arenado is our best position prospect, so I don’t think that we want to sign another 3B for longer than one year.

    Similarly, Ruttledge may be able to be the starting 2B in a year or so, so I wouldn’t want to invest in a 2B with a longer than one year contract.

    We got zero production last year from 2B and 3B. If we could sign a couple of .270 hitters who field well to one year contracts, that would be an upgrade (I’m not sure who those guys would be).

    I would devote the bulk of our available money to starting pitching and a reliever or two. Most of the money that we freed up came from pitching (not resigning Cook, and trading Street), so I think that most of it should go back to pitching.

  • jaredean | December 15, 2011 | 10:09 pm

    i was at a game last year when smith threw a ball home that short-hopped the catcher and a run scored because of it…my brother was in the owners box the next day and said that dick was very upset at Smith because of that play. He was also very stressed and upset at the team as a whole, just sat there and started at the field the whole time, not talking to anyone, focused on the game. we lost that day…i can see if he was upset at that then there were several plays smith had that were terrible in a span of a week…

  • steve c | December 16, 2011 | 5:34 am

    Unfotunately – I think the thing we’re all missing is that the big black hole is at (or soon will be at) 1st base. That’s a position that requires huge offensive production at the ML level for a team to be competitive. Even if Todd stays healthy, he’s become an AVG/OBP type guy at best.

    With that in mind, if there’s a trade out there that could net a solid 1st base prospect that’s close to ML ready – we should make it. Arenado will be at 3rd soon. It’s possible to piece together something at 2nd and one of the OF slots, but 1st needs to have a bona fide masher!

  • progmatinee | December 16, 2011 | 6:47 am

    Hoping the Rockies actually put together a winning season before 1B becomes the problem.

  • miketober | December 16, 2011 | 7:14 am

    I think too much was made of Smith’s short hop throw to Iannetta. Outfielders make off line throws every day and probably don’t put their owners ina catatonic stare because of it. Smith makes an accurate throw with a tough hop which CI can’t handle and he is the reason for the failed season.

    Seth had a some bad days in the OF (I saw him slow down to play a ball on the hop, only to have the batter stretch it into a double). But with his offensive production he is not the biggest hole on the team (he later hit a 2-R HR in that same game.)

  • Rich M | December 16, 2011 | 7:31 am

    Saw Dexter let a ball get by him into deep center fielld as well as dart thrown by Wheeler in the Fall League. Doesn’t make Wheeler a center better fielder than Dexter, so all I am saying that this S Smith bashing is way out of reality for some strange reason.

    Fielding is an important part of the game – yes, but my gut instinct tells me that it has become valued (Fielding % and UZR) at a level that simply does not make logical sense. These stats are flawed in several ways and yet people quote them like they are the gospel – just saying.

    Finally S Smith has historically (3-4 years) been considered by the baseball experts to be a slightly above average defensive player that could even play occassionaly in center, and now all of a sudden he has been put in the same defensive class as Bichette, Holliday and Soriano – just don’t see it and definitely don’t get it?

  • progmatinee | December 16, 2011 | 7:32 am

    I don’t mind the short hop, but Smith caught HAWPEITIS which is the complete unwillingness to dive for a ball unless its feet first.

  • Ike | December 16, 2011 | 8:11 am

    Jaredean,

    Purple Row has a pretty good rundown of the conference call. One thing that I haven’t seen mentioned to many times (it is on the purple row) is that it sounds like the AAA team won’t be in Colorado Springs much longer. Dick said “they have challenged themselves with this” and “they must find a better situation for their AAA affiliate” “you will notice that we sent Pomeranz and White to Tulsa last year because we didn’t want them getting blown up”. I guess it doesn’t have much effect on me, but I know it does on many and I find it interesting.

  • Ike | December 16, 2011 | 8:29 am

    At the risk of being a tad positive; the Rockies were actually pretty productive offensively last year. The big problem was that they were kind of the anti-Tebow. They were awful in close games and in close situations. Too often, the team did what they had to do to get the game into the bat of their #4 hitter only to have epic fail. They frequently snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, which is really what made them sooo hard to watch.

    If they can somehow get back to being the Rockies that grab victory when it is in front of them (unless the bullpen blows it) they’ll be okay. I think the front office is overreacting a bit, but all in all, I support the clubhouse makeover attempt. I’m not so convinced that Cuddyer is all he’s cracked up to be, but given the endorsements I willing to be optimistic about it. I do know that he’s a guy that is rosterable in fantasy baseball where Seth Smith; not so much.

  • konaman | December 16, 2011 | 8:31 am

    OK guys, looks like Cuddyer & Rocks have agreed, 3 year deal, reports mlb and Renck of the post. What do you think?

  • progmatinee | December 16, 2011 | 8:48 am

    I like it a lot. From reports I read he’s a vocal leader, which this team does lack, as I think Tulo has toned it down the past few years.

  • the postman | December 16, 2011 | 11:09 am

    DOD lost respect with this team when he called out Greg Reynolds as a lousy number 1 pick, might be true but you don’t go public with that stuff.

  • Rich M | December 16, 2011 | 12:38 pm

    Is DanO in full panic mode now?

  • cmon | December 20, 2011 | 3:10 pm

    So DOD thinks bringing in Cudyer who has been in the Twinkies clubhouse for 11 yrs is going to come into the Rockies clubhouse and be the guy, the leader, the man! Yeah right and the players are gonna say who the hell is this guy. You don’t create leaders, you either are or you are not. The key to pitching is develop their own cmon guys 1 Big League starter from the draft since 2000 when this group took over. Whats that tell you bad development (which is why Lach left)