The 100 Greatest Rockies: 78 Chris Stynes
We continue our look at the top 100 Colorado Rockies of all time in this article. Here, we look at No. 78 on our list, Chris Stynes.
When the Kansas City Royals traded David Cone to the Toronto Blue Jays, Chris Stynes was the only player to return value in that trade. Not that the trade was the reason for all futility in Kansas City but it was a sign of things to come. Cone had a 26.5 post trade WAR compared to Stynes 8.2 WAR. The other two players in that deal didn’t produce any post-trade WAR.
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The point is not to compare Stynes to Cone. His style of play has been “pissed off.” He played with a chip on his shoulder. Stynes was called up six times for the Royals. The longest stretch he had in the Majors was 30 games.
Being traded to the Reds created a career for Stynes in the National League. He became a versatile utility player. The SI article linked above lays out how his family and Irish heritage influenced him to go all out and particularly against the Colorado Rockies where he made a spectacular catch in the lap of a fan off a pop up off Todd Helton. It’s a must read to understand what fueled Stynes.
Stynes played third base, second base and left field. He was granted free agency after being traded from the Reds to the Red Sox. He signed with Cubs and then was released where he signed with the Rockies.
He played 138 games with only a .255 batting average with the Rockies but he had one of the highest WAR of his career with the club at 2.3 WAR. His speed and versatility extended the long tradition of utility players in Denver. Chris Stynes was called a spark plug for a reason.
Check out the previous story in this list about number 79 Todd Walker here.