Hope can be a dangerous thing – just ask the Rocky Mountain fanbase of the Colorado Rockies. It almost seems customary for the Blake Street ball club to embark on a streak that puts them within striking distance of the NL West crown – something they have never held in team history – or at the very least a Wild Card birth.
Of course momentum traditionally stalls and the team falls well short of playoff contention. Not making the playoffs seems rather customary as well; since their inaugural season 21 years ago the Rockies have tasted the promised land of MLB playoffs just three times.
So here we sit in the later part of April, and the Rockies find themselves within striking distance of NL West leading Los Angeles Dodgers. Following a Monday night bashing of division foe the San Francisco Giants, the Rockies are half a game behind the Giants and a mere game and a half behind Los Angeles.
That all too familiar feeling of hope is starting to once again find its way into the club house, stadium and homes of the Rockies and their followers. After dropping two games to the Miami Marlins in the season opener and two more to the Giants in San Francisco, the Rockies have won their remaining four series in 2014.
The Rockies aren’t just winning games; they are dominating each team they defeat. In games won they are outscoring the opposition by 53 runs which equates to an average margin of victory at 4.8 runs per game.
Losses in the offseason have been well compensated to date. Justin Morneau has given fans reason to believe there may be life post Todd Helton, and Charlie Blackmon has previously annoyed Rockies followers slowly forgetting Dexter Fowler one swing at a time.
The Rockies’ offense is second to none in baseball to this point and the pitching staff has overachieved. Starter Tyler Chatwood’s 2.77 ERA leads the club and Jordan Lyles leads the club with three wins to no losses. LaTroy Hawkins has been perfect to date recording five saves with a 1.35 ERA as the Rockies’ closer.
As great as this season’s start has been, it has to be an all too familiar feeling for most longtime followers of the Rockies. In fact it was just one year ago that the Rockies actually led the NL West with an equal upstart beginning to their season, infecting their fanbase with undeniable hope that would unfortunately and inevitably dwindle and later disappear completely following the All-Star break.
Of course this is a new season, and although early it is hard not to embrace the hope that comes with the glass half full attitude the early success has brought to longtime fans.
Yes, hope can be a dangerous thing. But for now in the thin air of the Rocky Mountains it’s purely intoxicating and enthusiastically consumed by fans young and old. The tough offseason losses are forgotten – if only temporarily – and for now Rockies Country is thinking, maybe – just maybe.