(CBS4) – On the day the Rockies had their first full-squad spring training workout the lingering drama between Nolan Arenado and Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich hung in the crisp February air.
“I can’t pretend to know what Nolan is going through,” said Ian Desmond. “To have gold gloves, platinum gloves, all-stars, MVP consideration, to have all that and have a fear of not having a championship, I can’t relate to that. To have that legacy being built and to not have the ring, I think that probably has a little bit of weight to it,” Desmond added.
“On the other side of the coin, I can’t describe what it feels like to be Jeff (Bridich),” continued Desmond.
“To come into a city with no championship, in a division where you’re out-budgeted to be honest, in a place where it’s almost impossible to build that legitimate Cy Young pitching staff. He’s done a great job. Sometimes that gets hard to say because he’s our boss and in all honesty that’s not what you always say about your boss, but that doesn’t meant that I don’t suppport Nolan and I don’t support Jeff.”
Desmond also thinks the talk surrounding Arenado and Bridich can actually benefit the Rockies.
“These conversations that we’ve had and these questions that we’ve been answering is only bringing us all together, and there’s nothing more that we need than to come together for this upcoming season.”
The Rockies continued to preach that the distractions from the offseason won’t effect the clubhouse and will not bother the players as they work toward the opening of the 2020 season.
“I just kind of saw it as noise,” said pitcher Jon Gray. “I didn’t really know what was said, but then again Nolan is our guy, he’s our leader. We need to be behind him when he comes in. He’s a guy that wants to win, and so do we.”
“We just have to focus on day-to-day things and what it’s going to take to make us better,” Gray continued. “It’s just about blocking it out and putting your hand over your ear.”
Shortstop Trevor Story, who went through arbitration with the club this offseason, echoed those sentiments. “It’s a new, clean slate, everybody is 0-0 and we’re just ready to get out there and play ball,” said Story.
“A lot of stuff has gone on this offseason, but we’re just ready to play ball.”
The Rockies will play their first spring training game on Saturday the 22nd against the Diamondbacks, and will begin the regular season in San Diego on March 26.