Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado is deeply unhappy with his team, and he doesn’t care who knows it.
Just 11 months after inking an eight-year, $260 million contract with the Rockies, Arenado is dissatisfied with how the team has been treating him.
Arenado feels disrespected
In a text message to MLB.com writer Thomas Harding, Arenado made it clear that the relationship between him and the Rockies has seriously deteriorated.
“There’s a lot of disrespect from people there that I don’t want to be a part of,” Arenado said in a text. “You can quote that.”
In reaction to [GM Jeff] Bridich’s announcement, Arenado elaborated.
“You ask what I thought of Jeff’s quotes and I say I don’t care what people say around there,” Arenado said. “There is a lot of disrespect.”
Asked what was said that he found particularly disrespectful, Arenado said, "No. I won't get into the details."
Arenado was responding to a quote from Bridich, who on Monday discussed with the Denver Post the Arenado trade rumors that have been flying around.
“With the season coming up and spring training on the horizon, we are going to start focusing on that,” Bridich said. “We have listened to teams regarding Nolan and really nothing has come of it. We are going to move forward pretty much as we expected — with Nolan in the purple and black and as our third baseman.
“So we can put this to bed and collectively look forward to the upcoming season and work toward that.”
Arenado later clarified that his angry comments weren’t about the trade rumors. “There’s more to it,” Arenado told Harding via text.
Arenado also called out Bridich specifically in a text to local ABC news station Denver7.
“Jeff is very disrespectful. I never talk trash or anything. I play hard, keep my mouth shut. But I can only get crossed so many times.”
It’s wild how much things have changed between Arenado and the Rockies in just one year. At the same time, the Rockies’ future has also changed a lot. When Arenado signed his contract, the Rockies had a bright future. They’d been to the playoffs two seasons in a row, and had finished 91-72 in 2018.
By the end of 2019, everything was different. The Rockies had won just 71 games, and Arenado admitted to The Athletic in September that “it feels like a rebuild.” The Rockies needed to make some moves in the offseason to be competitive in 2020, but haven’t. With less than a month until pitchers and catchers report for spring training, the Rockies haven’t signed any MLB free agents or made a single trade.
Arenado wouldn’t expand on why he feels so disrespected, so we don’t know if the current state of the team is a contributing factor. Given his frustration level at the end of last season (he told The Athletic it was “really high”), it could be playing a part in this.
There’s no easy solution on the horizon, though. Bridich has ended trade talks and wants to focus on the upcoming season. Arenado has a full no-trade clause, which means he has full control of where he goes — if Bridich decides to open up trade talks again. We could be looking at Giancarlo Stanton 2.0: a messy divorce between a player and a team that could have kept the face of its franchise if only it decided to try.
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