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Rockies news and links for March 25

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Alcides Escobar Jersey , 2019"WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections Scaling the RocksPebble ReportRockpileRockies Game ThreadsRockies Fan ExperienceRockpileCatch as catch can for the RockiesNew,113commentsRockies news and links for March 25, 2019 Catch as catch can for the RockiesRockies catching situation becomes clear as regular season nears | Mile High SportsThe question of catching for the Rockies has lingered all offseason, but with the optioning of Tom Murphy, it gets a bit more clear. Now just Tony Wolters and Chris Iannetta remain to take charge behind the plate. Murphy will go through waivers, and he will go to Triple-A if he doesn’t get claimed. He didn’t have the best spring training, but neither did Wolters. However, the Rockies seem to be more enthusiastic for Wolters’s defense and framing ability. This move goes along with optioning Pat Valaika and Carlos Estevez and trading Mike Tauchman to the Yankees. The Opening Day roster is winnowing down to the final players, including Raimel Tapia and Mark Reynolds, and we’re getting closer and closer to the start of the 2019 season.Colorado Rockies: More predictions for the 2019 season | Rox PileThe Rockies did not make many new additions in the offseason, choosing instead to extend contracts with Nolan Arenado and Bud Black. They’ve said goodbye to DJ LeMahieu, Adam Ottavino, Gerardo Parra, and Carlos Gonzalez. The Rockies did bring in Daniel Murphy, who can hopefully contribute to a more successful offense. David Dahl can hopefully do the same for the outfield, bringing more hitting power than Parra and Gonzalez. As long as these two players can stay healthy, the Rockies might stand a decent chance of a third consecutive playoff appearance. They’ll have to really step up, though, as other teams have also improved during the offseason.Stars never seemed to align for Colorado Rockies and Tom Murphy | Rox PileTom Murphy had a ton of potential for the Rockies, but that brought high expectations as well. Murphy did not quite live up to these hopes, and the Rockies have placed him on waivers. Not only was his slash line poor, but he couldn’t quite deliver defensively either. The Rockies faced a tough decision this offseason in terms of catchers. Since they opted not to pick up anyone for the position , they had to choose between Murphy, Tony Wolters, and Chris Iannetta. Iannetta was poised as the frontrunner early, so it came down to Wolters and Murphy. Wolters’ versatility ended up winning the battle for him, with Murphy waiting to see if the Rockies will try to get a trade for him before the season starts. Murphy still has a good deal of potential and could find success with another team in the 2019 season.Rockies name Freeland Opening Day starter | Rockies.comKyle Freeland is coming off a fantastic season, and he’s ready to start the season off strong for the Rockies. He’s worked hard in this offseason to grow and develop into an even better pitcher, which has paid off in getting him this honor. It’s not too much of a surprise, and it’s a great opportunity for the young hometown boy to kick the season off right. Following Freeland in the rotation will be German Marquez, then Tyler Anderson, Jon Gray, and Chad Bettis. Despite a strong showing in spring training, Jeff Hoffman will be optioned to Triple-A. Rockies defeated the Reds 4-3 in Sunday’s game. German Marquez delivered an impressive start, and Ben Bowden finished drew some attention while finishing the game strong. The Rockies next game will take place Monday against the Isotopes. The matchup between the high-flying Boston Red Sox and the defending World Series champion should be epic, and the Game 1 showdown between Chris Sale and Justin Verlander will set the tone for the American League Championship Series.The Red Sox won 108 games this year, and with their ace on the mound, it seems likely they will be at their best. However, the Houston Astros won 103 games in winning the American League West, and they compiled a 54-27 road record, which was the best in the Major Leagues. ALCS ScheduleAll Times ET.Game 1:Saturday, October 13 at Boston (8:09 p.m., TBS)Game 2:Sunday, October 14 at Boston (7:09 p.m. Jorge Soler Jersey , TBS)Game 3:Tuesday, October 16 at Houston (5:09 p.m., TBS)Game 4:Wednesday, October 17 at Houston (8:39 p.m., TBS)Game 5:Thursday, October 18 at Houston (8:09 p.m., TBS)*Game 6:Saturday, October 20 at Boston (5:09 p.m., TBS)*Game 7:Sunday, October 21 at Boston (7:39 p.m., TBS)**-if necessary Odds(via OddsShark)Series OddsHouston (-145; bet $145 to win $100)Boston (+115; bet $100 to win $115)The Astros beat the Red Sox 3-1 in last year's American League Division Series matchup, and the rematch appears compelling. A year ago, Alex Cora was the bench coach for manager A.J. Hinch and the Astros, and this year, he is managing the Red Sox.The team he is leading appears to be more aggressive and versatile than last year's version, and that's one of the reasons the Red Sox may have a much better chance of winning the series in 2018.Cora has said he learned quite a bit about postseason managing from Hinch."Be prepared to make adjustments throughout the most important thing," Cora said, per Alex Speier of the Boston Globe. "One thing I learned last year, to win a World Series is going to take 25, 27 guys to do it, regardless of their roles."In a perfect world, the starter goes six. You have the seventh inning guy , eighth inning, and ninth inning and you move on. To get 27 outs at this stage right now is very difficult. And sometimes you have to go to Plan B or Plan C."The Red Sox are led by a pair of MVP candidates in Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez. Betts batted a league-leading .346, hit 32 home runs, 30 stolen bases and 129 runs scored. Martinez led the American League with 130 runs batted in, bashed 43 home runs and hit a robust .330.Those two get plenty of support in the lineup from Xander Bogaerts and Andrew Benintendi.The Astros have a formidable lineup featuring Alex Bregman, George Springer and Jose Altuve. Bregman had the best year with a .286/.394/.532 slash line, while belting 31 homers and driving in 103 runs.Springer is proving to be one of the postseason's best home-run hitters, while Altuve is getting stronger following an injury-plagued 2018 season.Sale was on top of his game in the ALDS against the New York Yankees, as he got the win in Game 1 and then pitched a perfect eighth inning in the clinching Game 4 of the series. Sale showed no signs of the shoulder issues that slowed him in the second half of the season, and he had an earned-run average of 2.84 along with nine strikeouts in 6.1 innings against New York.Cora has decided to start David Price in Game 2 of the series even though the lefty lasted just 1.2 innings in his only appearance against the Yankees. He gave up three earned runs, two home runs, walked two and struck out none.Price has struggled during his postseason career as a starter, but Cora is giving him a chance to get back to his regular-season form when he was 16-7 with 177 strikeouts in 176.1 innings.Verlander has the experience and power to match Sale pitch-for-pitch in the opener. He was 16-9 with a 2.52 ERA during the regular season and struck out 290 batters in 214.0 innings. Verlander earned an ALDS win over the Cleveland Indians as he gave up two hits and two runs in 5.1 innings.Gerrit Cole will pitch for the Astros in Game 2, and he was 15-5 with a 2.88 ERA this season.PredictionThis should be the tightest of series between the two best teams in the American League, and likely all of baseball.The Red Sox are a sharper and more competitive team than they were a year ago, and give Cora credit for turning his team into a destructive unit. After getting beaten by the Astros last year, they are anxious to get some revenge and also get a chance to represent the American League in the World Series.The two teams are equal or at least close in most areas, but the Astros appear to have the stronger bullpen. If any area is likely to break down for the Red Sox, it's the team's relief pitchers.Despite that, we like the Red Sox to win because of their home-field advantage, and the leadership values of Betts and Martinez.Cora has also shown he is not afraid to use his starters out of the bullpen in the postseason.The Red Sox move on to the World Series after beating the Astros in seven games.

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