The Colorado Rockies, scuffling for much of the season and currently in fourth place in the NL West (33-30) are getting a nice boost for Tuesday’s series opener against the Minnesota Twins as shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is expected to return to the lineup.
Tulowitzki, one of the Rockies more consistent bats this season (.307/.373/.489) missed the last two days with a groin strain, but tells Troy Renck of the Denver Post that “it feels good,” and he expects to play Tuesday.
Tulo’s return, in addition to the improved hitting of late from Todd Helton and Ryan Spilborghs, gives the Rockies, as Renck writes, “their most powerful lineup to date.”
Many folks had the Rockies winning the NL West this season, but they have largely disappointed so far. Are they beginning to turn the corner?
“I hope,” Tulowitzki said. “You just never know.”
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The Mets signed left-hander Matt Purke to a minor league deal, the team announced Friday. Purke will also receive an invitation to spring training, where he could presumably beef up the club’s left-handed relief options alongside Jerry Blevins and Josh Smoker.
Purke has not appeared in the majors since 2016, when he was used in a dozen relief appearances by the White Sox. The 27-year-old racked up a 5.50 ERA, 6.0 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 in his first 18 innings with the team, and was demoted to Triple-A Charlotte in June to finish out the season. He spent the entire 2017 season in Triple-A as well, showing more promise with a 3.84 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 11.0 SO/9 in 48 appearances.
While Purke may not amount to much more than a depth piece in New York’s ‘pen, the veteran lefty figures to be part of the Mets’ new bullpen-first strategy next year. Reports from MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo indicate that the club will be focusing on improving their relief options in order to ease the workload of their starting pitchers, and will likely add a few more arms before the offseason comes to a close.