Mark Schlereth says he applauds Nolan Arenado and understands its “probably not going to happen” with the Colorado Rockies.
In a piece from The Athletic, the All-Star third baseman aired his grievances about the Rockies middling season, telling beat reporter Nick Groke after Thursday’s come-from-behind win he’s “tired of coming to the ballpark and losing.”
At the halfway point of the season, Colorado sits three games below .500 at 39-42. The club’s slipped to fourth in a wide-open National League West and are fewer games ahead of basement dweller San Diego (4 games) than division leader Arizona (8 games).
And despite the mediocre first half as a team, Arenado ranks 10th in the MLB in wins above replacement.
“I hope you guys enjoyed watching the greatest third baseman in the history of this organization, and one of the greatest third basemen who has ever played this game, because that, to me, is a kind request to be moved,” Schlereth said.
Aside from that, Schlereth said, it’s unlikely the Rockies will pay Arenado in arbitration, which comes up at the end of this season before the perennial MVP candidate becomes an unrestricted free agent in 2020.
“Whatever you throw at him right now, I don’t believe he’s going to take it because he wants to go somewhere where he has a chance to compete in the playoffs every year,” Schlereth said.
Schlereth’s comments come a day after his co-host Mike Evans said if he holds Arenado to his word on not wanting to become “another Todd Helton,” the prudent move would be to trade him this offseason.
“If you want to get the haul that you can get for him, you have to trade him in the offseason,” Evans said. “If you are non-competitive this year, there’s nothing you’re going to be able to project next year that’s going to be enough to convince him this is the place to be.”
The only way to convince Arenado to stick around, Evans said, is to build on the momentum of a playoff berth last season and show him the club’s trending upward.
“But, if you miss the playoffs and you’re not even competitive this year — you’re out of it by the middle of July — then last year just looks like a fluke, this year is what it is this year, and how are you going to be able to convince him that anything you do next year is going to be worth sticking around for?” Evans said.
Follow digital content producer Johnny Hart on Twitter: @JohnnyHart7.