Three up, Three down: Vetting the vets in the final days

Sep 29, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) throws to first base for an out in the fifth inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

As the Rockies wind down the 2015 season without hope of playing beyond game 162, several key veterans are pushing for personal records, accolades and paydays, while some are fighting for their future as Rockies.

In this week’s edition of “Three Up, Three Down,” we examine which vets have made a statement as the clock winds down, and who should be checking their watch heading into next year.

One Up: Nolan Arenado

It should go without saying, at this point, that Arenado is officially a bonafide superstar in Major League Baseball. The question of whether or not his bat could ever catch up to his glove has been answered without a shadow of a doubt.

Arenado heads into Wednesday’s game against Arizona tied with Bryce Harper for the NL lead in home runs (41) and with a comfortable lead on Paul Goldschmidt for the RBI crown. His slugging percentage is second behind Harper, his OPS is sixth in the NL at .889 and he’s top-10 in hits, runs and doubles. He leads the NL in extra base hits (84) and total bases (340).

In his last seven games he’s added two home runs and 13 RBI and his friendly rivalry with teammate Carlos Gonzalez has kept the two of them chasing Harper and one another in most offensive categories.

By staying consistent throughout the season, including through these difficult last few weeks of a lost season, Arenado has cemented himself as a leading MVP candidate heading into 2016 and the clear face of the franchise.

Arenado is arbitration eligible after this year. If the Rockies don’t make him a big offer, which includes shoring up their pitching staff, the fan base won’t be happy after seeing the former face of the franchise, Troy Tulowitzki, leave town in July.

One Down: Kyle Kendrick

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