The Rockies are coming off their second consecutive losing season and fourth-place finish in the NL West, but the team’s struggles probably aren’t going to lead to a front office change in the near future, in the opinion of Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post. Saunders would be “surprised” but not “shocked” if GM Jeff Bridich was fired, though Saunders figures Bridich’s job is safe since owner Dick Monfort is known to be very loyal to employees, plus the Rockies reached the postseason in both 2017 and 2018. Assuming Bridich stays, he’ll face an intriguing offseason, as the Rockies have several big contracts coming off the books but also a lot of roster holes to fill, as well as lingering questions about extension talks with Trevor Story and whether or not Nolan Arenado could be traded.
Some more items from around the National League…
- The Giants will look to add relief pitching this winter, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll be looking for a closer. “There’s no organizational philosophy for or against a closer. If it works out that way, evolves that way, it makes a lot of sense,” president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi told the San Francisco Chronicle’s John Shea and other media. “But we don’t go into this offseason saying that’s got to be a priority on our shopping list, to go out and get a closer, because we think it could work if we have the right group of relievers and the right level of depth in the bullpen.” Rather than acquire a closer, Shea wonders if the team could develop a steady ninth-inning arm from within, citing Reyes Moronta, Shaun Anderson, Jarlin Garcia and Camilo Doval as potential closer candidates.
- Now that the Cubs’ season is over, Javier Baez reiterated his desire to remain in Wrigleyville, telling NBC Sports Chicago’s Tim Stebbins and other reporters that “hopefully I stay here my whole career.” That said, Baez also noted that “anything can happen….We’ll see what happens and hopefully I’ll stay here.” Baez, Kris Bryant, Kyle Schwarber, and Anthony Rizzo (whose 2021 option is likely to be exercised) are all scheduled to hit free agency after the 2021 season, leading to speculation about which members of the quartet could be extended or traded. The majority of the Baez-related speculation has been focused on the possibility of an extension, though negotiations last offseason didn’t produce a new deal. Of course, it’s worth noting that the Cubs’ interest in a long-term commitment may have changed in the wake of a very rough offensive season for Baez, who hit only .203/.238/.360 over 235 plate appearances.