The Colorado Rockies were born when the city of Denver was granted an expansion franchise by Major League Baseball in 1991. The club then began play in the National League West Division in the 1993 season.
Over the ensuing quarter century the franchise has not experienced very much on-field success. They have yet to capture a division crown, and there have been just three trips to the MLB postseason.
Early in their history, from 1995-97, the Rox treated their fans to three consecutive winning seasons. This has been the only time they have produced that long a stretch of winning baseball.
THE BLAKE STREET BOMBERS
The 1995 team was an offensive juggernaut that finished in second place, just a game short of a division title. But those Rockies captured the NL Wildcard to become the first Colorado team into the playoffs.
Nicknamed the “Blake Street Bombers”, they were led by four men who each cranked more than 30 home runs. The Rockies would lose in that 1995 NLDS by 3-1 to the eventual World Series champion Atlanta Braves.
After that brief run of success it would be a long decade before Colorado would contend once again.
THRILLING RUN TO THE WORLD SERIES
In 2007, the Rockies set a franchise record by winning 89 games during the regular season. The club finished just a game off the division-winning pace of the Arizona Diamondbacks, tied with the San Diego Padres.
Colorado jumped in front early, but the Padres put up a five-run inning in the top of the 3rd to take a 5-3 lead. The hosts kept chipping away, and took a 6-5 lead into the top of the 8th inning. But San Diego tied it up on a two-out RBI double by Brian Giles.
The two teams fought into extra innings before the Padres finally broke through in the top of the 13th with a pair of runs. San Diego then turned the ball over to one of the greatest closers in the history of the game, Trevor Hoffman.
Instead of rolling over, the Rockies fought back. The first three batters got to Hoffman for a pair of doubles and a triple to tie it up, and then a sacrifice fly off the bat of Jamey Carroll brought home the game-winner.
Those Rockies rode the excitement and momentum of that rally all the way to a World Series berth. First they swept the Philadelphia Phillies 3-0 in the NLDS, then the division rival Dbacks in four straight in the NLCS.
Then in the franchise’ only Fall Classic appearance to date, Colorado was swept out in four straight games by the Boston Red Sox.
TOUGH PLAYOFF LOSS, THEN COLLAPSE
Two years later, the Rockies returned to the postseason. That 2009 club set the franchise record by winning 92 regular season games, finishing three games behind the Los Angeles Dodgers.
In the NLDS, the Rockies were taken out 3-1 by the defending World Series champion Phillies. It was a bitter defeat. With the series knotted at 1-1, the Phils captured each of the final two games in Colorado by one run, with both games coming down to the final inning.
The Rockies fell to 83 wins the following season, and have not experienced a winning campaign since. Entering the 2017 season, Colorado has experienced six straight losers. However, some exciting young talent has the club and its fans believing that streak of futility is about to end.
TOUGH CHOICES AND APOLOGIES
Putting together the Colorado Rockies All-Time 25-Man Roster was not as difficult as some other teams with a longer, more storied history has been.
Still, there were a few tough decisions at the back-end of the pitching staff and position player lists. In the end, I went with just a 10-man pitching staff. Fact is, that is a generous number when you examine the history of this team.
The usual “apologies” segment includes a bunch of players who were in contention for those back-end roster spots.
So who did make this roster? As you will see and can probably already anticipate, there are a bunch of mediocre arms, but some explosive bats. Let me know who you would have named, and who you would have left off your own roster.