Tuesday, August 6, 2013

As the Colorado Rockies lose again, Dick Monfort continues to bury his head in the sand

The bad news keeps coming for Colorado Rockies fans. 
The Colorado Rockies lost 3-2 on Tuesday night in New York. It was the latest in a long stretch of baseball in which the Rockies have failed to get the job done.

Former Rockie Eric Young, Jr., however, did get the job done. He made a brilliant catch to rob Todd Helton of an RBI single with the bases loaded and two outs in the 6th inning, then scored from second base on an infield single from Juan Lagaras.

There is plenty to critique from the game on Tuesday. However, the loss was only the second most troubling bit of news for Rockies fans.

During a visit to the MLB Fan Cave in New York City, Dick Monfort had a quick interview with MLB's Mark Newman. The answers to the interview questions were troubling to say the least for anyone who believes that this team is only a step or two away from being a winner.

The interview focuses on the way social media has helped the Rockies reach their fans, but then gets into the 2013 season and how the Rockies have been playing.

"We've had some injuries, but we've just gotten into a rut where we don't have a lot of confidence...our guys believe they can go on a run and get back in this race, and I think they can too," said Monfort. "It's got to start somewhere; hopefully it starts tonight."

"But you know what? We've seen it happen before. We've seen it with other teams. The Dodgers were struggling for a while and looked awful...we've really played pretty decent games, other than three games in Atlanta."

Why are these comments so troubling for Rockies fans? It proves that Monfort has bought into the O'Dowd excuses. It shows that he is nothing more than a casual baseball fan. He enjoys the game, but he doesn't know the game. He doesn't understand how it works. When he watches baseball, to him it is the same thing as a movie or a symphony. It is there for entertainment value. How the game ends isn't as important as being entertained.

For an owner to not know the intricacies of the game is perfectly acceptable. The fact is, most owners are better business people than they are baseball fans. To become an owner of a baseball team, the owner had to have made plenty of money in some other field, so being devoted enough to baseball to know the vast details shouldn't be expected.

However, in the Rockies case, this makes for a bad situation. Monfort is, of course, supposed to say the things he said. He has to be politically correct. In this case though, Monfort seems genuine in his comments. He doesn't seem to be pulling any punches.

The first statement, talking about dealing with injuries, shows how ingrained that excuse is to the Rockies front office. When asked about the season the Rockies have had, the first thing Monfort can say is that they have had some injuries? Of course the Troy Tulowitzki injury has hurt the Rockies. There is no denying that. However, what Monfort seems to forget is that for the past two months, the Rockies have been absolutely dead on offense. Lifeless. Sure, Tulowitzki missing from that lineup hasn't helped, but take Tulo out of the situation and the Rockies still have a lineup that features two of the remaining eight All-Star starters in the National League.

For the Rockies to play the injury card, after completely wearing that excuse out in 2012, is absolutely unacceptable. The reality is, with Tulowitzki's injury ending his season in May of 2012, the Rockies should have been prepared for him to be limited in his return. For them not to have a 'Plan B' is completely unacceptable.

The next statements are equally bothersome for different reasons. It proves the point that Monfort and the Rockies front office aren't living in the reality of baseball. Instead of following the old adage that baseball is a marathon, not a sprint, Monfort believes that going on runs is how people win divisions. What he fails to understand is that playing solid, consistent baseball over the course of 162 games is far easier, and far more likely, to get a team to the playoffs.

To explain the third statement is simply impossible. It is a statement that should leave anyone who watches the Rockies day-in and day-out completely speechless. Does Monfort really believe that keeping games close is good enough? He wasn't at all disappointed by a 5-5 homestand against the National League's worst? Those games were close, so they must have been good? The lack of his ability to either see the brutal disappointment, or acknowledge it, whichever it is, is baffling. It is enough to make fans give up hope.

What the interview made clear was that there is absolutely no disgust from ownership in the Rockies season. The expectations are not to win. They are to be entertained. It has been said hundreds of times by outsiders about the Rockies, however, it was easy to deny, not wanting to believe that an owner would truly see his team as strictly entertainment, with results not even secondary, but more disappointing, not even on the priority list at all.

For Rockies fans, the light at the end of the tunnel isn't getting closer. In fact, the train is headed in the opposite direction of the light. The hole that the Rockies are in is deep, but there is no forward progression. It starts at the top and trickles all the way down, and it isn't going to change anytime soon.

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  1. Well they provide a nice place for families to spend their warm summer evenings and days.

    So they got that going for them.

    Monfort is a terrible owner if you want a competitive team.

    He's a great owner if you want Bread and Circus. Or beer and hotdogs

    O'Dowd needs to go. BTW I love how EY JR has turned it around now that he's left the disorganized bum pit that is the Rockies organization.

    Fire Bichette too. Worst hitting coach ever.

    1. Every year we have a lousy team. Every year we have nothing to watch after the All Star Break. Every year we have no talented players! And E Y is hitting .257. About the same as most of the Rockies.

  2. I wrote this November 9, 2012...on my facebook profile.....

    I fanatically love Walt Weiss as a former player, and respect him for the job he's done at Regis HS....that said....This is an absolutely brilliant move by the Rockies! They accomplish so many things with this hiring...they 1) Placate an upset Rockies fan base, by hiring a familiar player who was a ROY, played in the World Series, and is a now a local guy who coaches at an area high school. 2) Since he's never managed at any professional level he doesn't really have to succeed, there are no expectations for winning, which means the Rockies don't have to spend an extra time building a winner or spending any money on free agency if they happen to get close. 3) They can "mold" Weiss into their way of thinking about pitching at altitude with sub par talent going 4 innings a night. This buys thems two years before they have to do anything real. 4) By not hiring a big name manager they save a bunch of money. Plus when the players revolt and start asking to be traded they'll save even more money..all profit for the Monforts. This was truly a brilliant move on their part...it accomplishes all of their goals. (notice I didn't mention anywhere a goal about winning...cuz they just don't care) I really hope Walt tells them to stick their pitching ideas where the sun don't shine, rally's the players around him like he did when he played ball, and hand ownership a giant shit burger to eat ala the movie Major League. Good luck Walt, And I hope the Rox let you actually pick your own coaches...and between you and Todd, I hope the kids listen to ya.

    Updating this 8/6...Now all that remains is when/who will be traded, Tulo gets 16 mil next year, and 20 mil for 5 years after that. He'll be gone...Matt Belise will be gone for sure as he's making 4.5, he may actually be the first as he's the most marketable at the moment. Cuddy is another one who could go too (trading away a veteran to give him a chance at the playoffs helps the Rockies "save face" with the fans while dumping salary.

  3. David, you once again effectively summarized the problems with the Rockies. Nothing is going to change as long as the Monfort's refuse to hold anyone accountable for the teams continued poor performance. I believe in loyalty to your employee's but lets get real, O'Dowd and his entire staff don't have a clue. It isn't the coaching staff's fault, you have to have the talent to win, and who is responsible for the talent (or lack thereof) on the Rockies?

    Look what happened to the Orioles once they hired some real baseball people such as Showalter and Duquette. It didn't take that long to turn that franchise around after years of losing.

    Dick Monfort, please have the guts to make a change!!!!

  4. "Dickie' should go back to meat packing. Oh, but wait! There's a lot more $$$ owning the Rock Pile of ineptness. It's time to move on, perhaps to another city that expects success and might have some competence in the front office. Mr. M., give it up to anybody else.You've made your take. What is there to celebrate in your woohoo 20 years of agony and disappointment.

  5. As long as the fans keep throwing their money away by attending games nothing will change. They also need some new announcers on their Tv coverage. Those guts are a joke.

    1. I agree no fans @ games no money for DICK maybe that will change DICK'S attitude.

  6. i agree with all of the above. WW tried but he is not doing what needs to be done with the talent he has. Bichette has to go. players that need to be traded or just released. tulo and cargo deserve better and should be traded to a consistent contending Al club. belisle, lopez, escalona and corpas gone.cuddy should also be released for monetary purposes. helton see ya, get pacheco and drill him until he has the abilities to play first base. the rest of the lineup doesn,t really matter because the Monforts won't spend the money.announcers, cavnar, goodmen and frazier should also be relieved of their duties.yesterday is history, tomorrow a mystery today is a gift that's why we call it the present and that's how the rockies organization run their club.

  7. this not a negative about the players.
    f the incredibly sociopathic rockie owner/management team.
    hurrah for Eric Young, Omar Quintanilla and any other player who has been fortunate to escape from this non winning franchise.
    'sell me, trade me, but just let me get the hell out of this madhouse'.

  8. Here's the point. O'Dowd is hired by the Monforts. They give him his budget and his marching orders. Considering what he has to work with, he's done a respectable job. I can't think of one GM who could do more, with less.

    As to Charlie and Dick Monfort, they are far from clueless. They are multi-millionaires and plan to stay that way. They took one shot into high priced free agency, got singed and vowed not to go back. They won't.

    Long ago, these highly successful businessmen learned one of the three main business models of baseball---the more you spend, the less profit there is, EVEN if you win it all. They prefer to spend less and make more, all while being competitive (re: average). Like the Cubs, their selling point is their ballpark, and the 'Coors Field' experience. If they make the playoffs or the WS, that's lagniappe. It's not a goal.

    So it's really simple. They're not stupid--they're brilliant. It's about your money. The Monforts want more of it, while spending less of theirs. Works for them.

    1. Agreed, I moved to the area in November 2002. One of the first sports articles I read was a piece in which Monfort stated exactly that, that he could make more money by spending less. He stated that with low costs, and low gates and concessions, he would make more. Simply put, he stated he would not spend the money needed to have a winning team, as that was not his intent. Money is Monfort's greed.

    2. Monfort is evidently not stupid or he wouldn't be where he is at, unless he inherited his wealth. Money is definitely Monfort's greed, downfall and blinders.

    3. If I'm not mistaken they inherited their family business and sold a large part of it to ConAgra.

    4. Yep. Ken and Myra would be mortified.

  9. so f the rockies.....they are a waste of money and time.

  10. Ownership is 'Fletch, and you're not'.
    Walk away from this money grubbing farce.

  11. OK, now I'm REALLY done with the Rockies!! After last year and now the quitting this year, it makes me sick! Unload Cargo, I'd be willing to bet 75-80% of his HRs and RBIs are "empty" ones. In other words, when the game is already out of hand. He is worthless in the clutch! Let him go to the money-throwing Yankees! Tulo, he's no longer a team player or a leader. What's Fowler gonna end up batting, maybe .230 or .240?! You watch, let's see just how many players get "injured" down the stretch and quit! Their pathetic! We love ya Todd, but please go home! Wilin, as a major league catcher...come on! Trade him to the AL, he'll be a great DH. If I was a strong player on this LOSER of a team and organization, I'd demand to be traded! They all have a LOSER mentality, from ownership down to the players. They accept losing and simply go cash their absurd checks! The only way it will change is if the fans stop buying tickets. But I guess most of the unknowledgeable baseball fans here will just keep going. Not me, I'm DONE! I hope they finish LAST, just like all the experts said they would at the beginning! PATHETIC!!

    1. Yep, I am done too. Why should the fans care when the team owner doesn't. It is fastly becoming apparent that the team players have given up. Find another team to support and you will be happy.

  12. He's not clueless, he sees that he can make money hand over fist even fielding a crap team and he's going with it. If people stop going to the games then he'll have to do something about it. Overall he's an arrogant jerk who inherited everything he has and it shows in his interactions with upset fans.

  13. monforts=money=morons