Everything that could go wrong, did for the Rockies in 2011. Injuries and ineffectiveness gave them a double whammy this year. The Rockies finished in 4th place in the N.L. West with a 73-89 record, 21 games behind the Diamondbacks. Here is a look at some things that stood out to me in 2011:
TEAM MVP: 27-year old righty swinging shortstop Troy Tulowitzki proved once again in 2011 that he’s the best player on the Rockies. Tulowitzki played in 143 games for the Rockies in 2011 and he was 162 for 537 (.302 avg, .916 OPS) with 81 runs scored, 30 homers, 105 RBIs and 9 stolen bases.
BEST PITCHER: 23-year old righty starting pitcher Jhoulys Chacin has stepped into the ace role for the Rockies. He pitched in 31 games (all starts) for the Rockies last year and he was 11-14 with a 3.62 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP. He only gave up 168 hits in his 194 innings pitched last year while whiffing 150 batters. But, Chacin did walk 84 batters, so he still has stuff to work on.
PLEASANT SURPRISE: Many “experts” thought that 38-year old lefty swinging 1B Todd Helton was done. But, he returned to being a very solid hitter for the Rockies in 2011, before his year was cut short due to injury. Helton played in 124 games for the Rockies last year and he was 127 for 421 (.302 avg, .850 OPS) with 59 runs scored, 14 homers and 69 RBIs.
BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT: The Rockies were expecting big things out of 26-year old lefty swinging 3B Ian Stewart in 2011. Stewart played in only 48 games for the Rockies in 2011 and he was 19 for 122 (.156 avg, .464 OPS) with 14 runs scored, 0 homers, 6 RBIs and 3 stolen bases. He spent most of the season in AAA.