Just like a year ago when the Rockies signed free-agent reliever Greg Holland, the franchise has a feeling of a knowledge of the inner workings of their latest free-agent addition, Wade Davis, who will step into the reliever role vacated by Holland’s free-agent departure.
Rockies pitcher coach Steve Foster was the bullpen coach for the Royals when Holland came to the big leagues, and Foster was theRoyals pitching coordinator/special assistant to Royals general manager Dayton Moore when the Royals decided to convert Davis from being a starting pitcher to a reliever in 2014.
Both pitchers flourished.
Holland was a key factor in the Rockies claiming the second NL wild-card spot a year ago, and the Rockies, who felt they were not making progress in an attempt to resign him, are confident that Davis can help them take the next step in the post-season in 2018.
The track record speaks for itself.
Davis is 59-39 with a 3.45 ERA and 79 saves in eight full seasons in the big leagues after a September audition with the Rays in 2009. The right-hander, who has pitched for the Rays, Royals and Cubs, has been even better with his focus on pitching in relief.
Davis Year by Year as a Reliever
Davis has been at his best in his post-season opportunities.
Davis Year by Year in the Post-Season
Since he recorded his first career save, for the Royals on Sept. 4, 2014, Davis has the third lowest ERA and third best save success ratio among relievers. He also has the sixth lowest ERA among closers.
Top Relievers Since Davis 1st Save Sept. 4, 2014
Rockies relievers converted a franchise record 77 percent of their saves in 2017, the best ratio in the NL. Three of the top save success rates in franchise history have come when the Rockies advanced to the post-season – 2017, 2009 and 1995.
Rockies Top Save Conversion Rates
Bold denotes years Rockies claimed a wild-card spot in post-season.
DID YOU KNOW
— Davis has made only one career appearance at Coors Field? He struck out two of the three batters he faced in the eighth inning on Aug. 19, 2014 — Michael McKenry and Josh Rutledge. DJ LeMahieu grounded out to end the inning.
–Davis has been an All-Star selection each of the last three seasons — 2015 and 2016 with the Royals and 2017 with the Cubs.
–Davis won the 2015 Babe Ruth Award for best performance in the post-season.
–Davis has been a top 10 finisher in Cy Young voting twice — eighth in the AL in 2014 and sixth in the AL in 2015. He was the top vote-getter among relievers in both years.