SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Rockies manager Walt Weiss heads into 2015 with a lineup built to win now and a pitching staff that, by any objective measure, is being built. His goal is to mix these parts into a winner.
Four straight losing seasons, with much of that time without key players because of injuries, can have an effect on a team's confidence. Weiss has said on several occasions this winter he was working on the squad "from the neck up." He explained during a video interview with MLB.com why he has focused his efforts during Spring Training on building the team's confidence.
"It's critical," Weiss said. "Over the course of a six- or seven-month season, there are going to be some tough stretches. You've got to be able to battle through those things and still believe that we can win. The guys look around the clubhouse and see the level of talent that we have in there, and I do believe they feel like they can win."
Weiss discussed other pluses, such:
• An infield that includes three Gold Glove Award winners -- third baseman Nolan Arenado (twice), shortstop Troy Tulowitzki (twice) and second baseman DJ LeMahieu, and a 2014 finalist in first baseman Justin Morneau, plus the ability to have Tulowitzki and outfielder Carlos Gonzalez in the offensive lineup.
• The leadership of veteran Kyle Kendrick, signed this winter to be a leader by example for a staff that's young. Lefty Tyler Matzek, the home opener starter, and righty Jordan Lyles form a young core.
• A bullpen that should bounce back from the combination last year of injuries, overuse and simple bad years.
Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb, and like his Facebook page, Thomas Harding and Friends at www.Rockies.com This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.