Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Colorado Rockies mix things up in the front office, but nothing really changes

Dan O'Dowd remains in charge of nearly everything.
The Colorado Rockies made some changes in the front office on Wednesday. Well, sort of.

Wednesday started very early for Rockies fans. With whispers at Coors Field, then a report on 850 KOA that Dan O'Dowd had been fired as general manager of the franchise. Twitter went wild with speculation, with everyone looking for a confirmation just after midnight.

Early in the morning, sources were reporting that rumors weren't true and that O'Dowd was still in charge--for the time being. That answer screamed of impending changes, and before noon, fans had their answer. Sort of.

O'Dowd was still the general manager, but assistant GM Bill Geivett would be taking over Major League operations duties, which would not include player personnel decisions, trades, or anything that sounds like anything related to Major League operations. In fact, Geivett still reports directly to O'Dowd.

So what changed? It seems like nothing. Internally there may be some changes, however. The move does take some responsibility off of O'Dowd's shoulders. The responsibility that might be most effected by the move is that Geivett will now directly oversee Jim Tracy.

This may be the first step in relieving Tracy of his duties as manager of the Rockies. O'Dowd has made it clear that he is in Tracy's court, but this may be a move that takes that decision, at least entirely, away from O'Dowd. Geivett would of course have to get O'Dowd's approval for that move, but it allows for the influence from someone new to factor into the decision-making process.

The move also, at least on the surface, puts more of an emphasis on O'Dowd's role in the development department. That is an area of extreme struggle for the Rockies in recent years. Many fans have blamed O'Dowd for those issues, however, the resume would suggest that in his Cleveland years, he was a pretty good talent developer.

What changes actually happen remain to be seen, and for most Rockies fans, the only change that they want to see is one that involves O'Dowd walking out of his office with a cardboard box containing his personal items.

What seems odd is why the Rockies would even make this announcement. For what the fans are concerned about, nothing has changed. Were fans really needing to be updated on what Bill Geivett was taking on internally? Did anyone need to know that O'Dowd would be focusing more on the development side? Couldn't that have just been something that was taken care of internally without a press release?

The answer to those questions are easy. The move was announced in an effort to appease fans. It was done because of an information leak that caused a stir among fans late into the night, with the team clearly needing to make a statement. It was done to give the fans some information that would make them feel like the team was changing things around, when really, nothing was changed.

It would be attention-worthy if suddenly Geivett was the guy fielding calls from opposing general managers. He won't be. The guy pulling that trigger is still O'Dowd. It would be worth putting out a press release if the changes suddenly had Geivett in charge of Major League operations, and reporting directly to Dick Monfort instead of O'Dowd.

However, Geivett takes on a few new responsibilities, but still reports directly to O'Dowd. O'Dowd still makes the decisions on who to sign, who to trade, who to call up, etc. So really, nothing much changed.

The positive thinking mentality would suggest that this gives an opportunity to O'Dowd to not be overwhelmed with as much to do anymore. From statements made both in USA Today and on the season ticket holder conference call, O'Dowd made reference to being tired and having a weight on his shoulders. Possibly this move allows him to take a breath and get refreshed to the point that he can contribute to the team once again. However, at this point, most fans would suggest that his ability to do that, even when at his best, is impossible.

Meanwhile, the Rockies continue to struggle on the field, losing once again on Wednesday 9-5 after a long rain delay. The fundamentals remain missing, the pitching is beyond terrible, and yet, not one person has been held responsible for the team's lack of solid play.

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  1. Yeah, but the fans almost get tacos most nights for scoring 7 runs....

  2. Well, of course they will try to get rid of Tracy, because they will find him at fault of odwds freaking mistakes, and that's a slap on all of us, the loyal fans of the Rockies.
    get rid of odowd and his court,, not Tracy.