Rockies hoping for return to diamond in coming weeks

Posted at 11:25 PM, May 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-02 01:25:09-04

With the calendar turning to May, we'd typically be a month into the Major League Baseball season.

"It is weird sometimes you catch yourself saying, I'm supposed to be playing baseball right now," Rockies starting pitcher Kyle Freeland (3-11 6.73 ERA in 2019) said.

Instead, trick shots and virtual competitions are how the Rockies are finding ways to stay busy at the moment.

"I was actually at his (David Dahl) house for one of those games, he enjoyed it for sure," Freeland said.

Following a frustrating 71-91 campaign, few teams and players were as motivated as Colorado to return to the diamond and right the ship in 2020.

"Things are going to be much different this year," Freeland said. "Whenever we do get started back up, roster wise, with the players we have on our team and the season we had last year, we're looking to bounce back in a very positive way and do damage."

It is a confidence and determination that will have to wait out this COVID-19 delay, until the MLB and the MLBPA can find a safe and logistically-agreeable way to return to play.

"The ideas that have been presented, and there are a lot of good ones, to get baseball going as quickly and safely as we can when the time is right to," Rockies assistant general manager Zach Wilson said.

The most recent proposal, first reported by USA Today's Bob Nightengale, would split the 30 organizations into three geographical divisions, allowing each franchise to play in their home ballpark without fans.

Arizona and Florida's spring training sites would be used to allow players to round into playing shape before a shortened season began sometime in June.

"I think everyone is sensing that this season will happen to some extent," Rockies manager Bud Black said.

In a time of such uncertainty, the thought of summer baseball brings the kind of optimism even "Big Leaguers" need on occasion.

"Me personally, I can't wait to play," Freeland said. "I'm going to be overjoyed once we get the word that this plan is set or we're playing on this date, whatever it is."