While the trade possibilities are still very much on the table, it sounds like Nolan Arenado regrets going public with his frustration with the Rockies this week.
Mixed up on trade rumors for most of the offseason – a year after signing a massive extension, and after the Rockies have done nothing to improve the team – Arenado said he felt his GM was “very disrespectful” and that he’d been “crossed” by the organization. The precise contours of those comments were unclear, but it seemed clear enough that Arenado was very unhappy with the state of things. Jeff Passan reported that it was mostly attributable to the Rockies’ inaction this offseason (and you could, by extension, surmise it was connected then in some way to Arenado’s standing on the team).
But if you’re hoping for more DRAH-MA from Arenado, you probably aren’t going to get it any time soon. Here’s the statement he issued to Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post:
— Patrick Saunders (@psaundersdp) January 23, 2020
The bit there at the end that gets cut off is “I’m getting ready for the upcoming season. I’m working hard to get better for my teammates and fans. NA28.”
In other words, Arenado remains as pissed as he sounded – about something going on behind the scenes – but he regrets saying it publicly (out of character). He’s not going to talk about it further at this time, and he’s gonna focus on preparing for the season.
That all sounds well and good, but these situations necessarily hang like a dark cloud over an organization, especially when it’s about the dang face of your franchise, who is on a monster deal for the next seven years. The questions will be impossible to avoid in Spring Training, and then for months thereafter if the Rockies are losing. I tend to think there’s no way Arenado finishes his contract with the Rockies.
To that end, maybe he’s traded soon, or at midseason, or maybe the Rockies just hope he plays the next two years and then opts out of his contract. As we’ve already discussed, the situation is such that the Rockies simply cannot get a great deal for Arenado in trade, thanks to the contract and his no-trade clause, so the question is whether they just want to move on, or if they want to try to salvage this relationship. Ugly stuff either way.
Makes you thankful that everything about the Cubs and Kris Bryant has been cordial, above-board, and subdued, yes?