Would the Rockies trade Charlie Blackmon? And nine more questions worth asking

As the Rockies approach their season opener in San Diego on March 30, I present 10 questions that demand answers:

1. If the Rockies are out of contention at the trade deadline, and if Charlie Blackmon rakes in as the designated hitter, would they consider dealing him? Should they?

I know he will be 37 on July 1st. And yes, he is a franchise icon. And yes, he can veto deals (his contract says he can block deals with 15 clubs a year). But “Chuck Nazty,” who is in the final year of his contract, will always be a Rockie. But if he has a chance to play for a competitor, it’s worth trading him.

2. Will the Rockies trade CJ Cron? Cron is a bargain, earning $7.25 million for the team in the final year of his contract. He hit 28 homers in 2021 and 29 for 22 while hitting 100 RBI for the first time in his career. So, yes, the Rockies will probably trade Cron at some point.

3. Will Kris Bryant be All-Star for the fifth time in his career? If he stays healthy, yes. If you’ve seen Bryant swing the bat, you know he’s a great hitter with smooth power. I can predict a .290 average, 30 home runs and over 100 RBIs.

4. Will 21-year-old shortstop Ezequiel Tovar win National League Rookie of the Year? It is doubtful. Tovar, I believe, is going to wow us with his defense, but he has to put up big offensive numbers to get national attention and I don’t think that’s going to happen.

5. Will German right-hander Marquez have a rebound season? While I don’t think he’ll ever match his 2018 season (14-11, 3.77 ERA in 33 starts), he still has some good stuff. So yes, it will bounce back. But he’s going to have to become more of a technician to do that.

6. What will be the weakest link in the Rockies? No surprise here, this is going to be the starting rotation. Although top starters Kyle Freeland and Marquez are pitching well, the Rockies lack depth. They didn’t really address that shortcoming in the offseason.

7. When will outfielder Zac Veen be called up to make his major league debut? Barring a major minor injury or drought, I predict Veen will join the Rockies before the All-Star break.

8. Will the Rockies be better on the road? Yes, how could they not be? The Rockies’ road record was 27-54 last season when they hit .225 and threw just 51 homers.

9. The Rockies and Nationals are the only teams that failed to win a Grand Slam last season. It was the only time in franchise history that the Rockies did not hit a slam. Will they hit one this season? Of course. Uh. The odds are in their favor.

ten. How many fans will the Rockies average at Coors Field this season? I sense major unease within the fanbase, and while the revamped schedule will help attract fans (the Yanks arrive July 14-16), I could see the Rockies attracting fewer than 30,000 fans per game for the first time in a full season since 2007.

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