Rockies manager Bud Black joined CBS4 Sports anchor Michael Spencer at the ViewHouse Centennial Monday for Xfinity Monday Live.
CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CBS4) – The Rockies are coming off a series win over the Washington Nationals and have a 60-46 record. They reached 60 wins on July 30, which is the earliest the franchise has ever reached the 60 win mark.
“When we came to the park on Saturday, there was a different focus,” Black said of his Rockies club as they entered the series with Washington in which they took two of the three games. “The guys were ready to play.”
The Rockies are currently third in the NL West behind the Dodgers and Diamondbacks, and currently hold the second National League wild card spot.
“The Dodgers, it’s incredible what they’re doing. They’re off to some sort of special season,” said Black.
The Rockies are hoping their two trades prior to the MLB trade deadline will help secure a playoff spot.
The club added relief pitcher Pat Neshek and catcher Jonathan Lucroy in an effort to help their young pitching staff.
“The main thing for us is he brings a stabilizing veteran presence behind the plate,” Black said of the deal which brings Lucroy to Denver. “The veteran presence for our young guys will give them a little bit of comfort.”
“We feel good about Greg Holland, (Jake) McGee, (Mike) Dunn…but I think adding Neshek, who was an all-star performer this year, I think fortifies our bullpen.”
The Rockies are hoping their pitching can improve, and that their hot hitting can continue.
Rockies leadoff hitter Charlie Blackmon is currently 4th in the National League with a .329 batting average and has 70 RBI.
“You know right away that we have one of the best leadoff hitters in the game,” said Black regarding Blackmon. “His ability to get on base, and not just with a single, but with power, the double, the potential triple, it gets the pitcher in a defensive mode right off the bat.”
Blackmon was one of four all-stars for the Rockies including third baseman Nolan Arenado, who is one of the best in the game at the plate and in the field.
“Incredible” is how Black described Nolan’s play on defense. “I saw it from the other dugout for years. He does something every day that makes you just appreciate his skill level on defense.”
The Rockies will begin a six game home stand on Tuesday. They host the Mets for three games and then host the Phillies for a three-game series beginning on Friday.