Lineup set, Rox raring to make October run

Colorado hoping for more All-Star seasons from Blackmon, LeMahieu, Arenado

March 25th, 2018

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Rockies will start 2018 with a lineup quite similar to the one they went with in '17. That's not bad, considering the Rockies made their first postseason appearance since '09.
If Charlie Blackmon, DJ LeMahieu and turn in more All-Star years, and rebound from slumps and (hand, right calf) and (right quadriceps) avoid injuries, the Rockies could be even more potent.
Projected Opening Day lineup
1. Charlie Blackmon, CF
2. DJ LeMahieu, 2B
3. Nolan Arenado, 3B
4. Carlos Gonzalez, RF
5. Trevor Story, SS
6. Ian Desmond, 1B
7. Gerardo Parra, LF
8. Chris Iannetta, C
9. , RHP

Key roles
• Gonzalez's return means the Rockies can continue having Blackmon in the leadoff spot, where he hit 37 homers and led the National League with a .331 batting average last year. However, keep an eye on Gonzalez and Parra. Gonzalez signed late and was around for just half of Spring Training, and Parra missed the early part of spring because of right hand surgery. Both feel caught up, but they're going into the regular season with fewer at-bats than in normal years.
• A former batting champ at No. 2 in LeMahieu and a threat for the home run and RBI titles at No. 3 in Arenado is not bad.
• Don't sleep on Iannetta, who had 17 home runs for the D-backs last season. That total was one fewer than his career high, which came in 2008 during his first run with the Rockies. Coming home to Coors Field shouldn't hurt.

Injury updates
• Right-handed starter suffered right shoulder soreness early in camp, and the Rockies were careful with him. He threw a bullpen session on Saturday, and he is expected to play in Minor League games sometime in April.
• Righty reliever suffered a left oblique injury early in camp, and he had a relapse later.