Kyle Freeland and the Colorado Rockies have agreed on a five-year contract extension that will cover the 2022-26 seasons. The extension includes two arbitration years and three years of free agency.
During a press conference Wednesday morning prior to Wednesday afternoon’s Colorado-Philadelphia contest at Coors Field, Freeland — a native of Denver — answered questions about the contract extension and his time with the Rockies since being drafted by the organization in the first round (eighth overall pick) in 2014.
Here are some excerpts of Freeland’s comments:
Colorado Rockies starter Kyle Freeland is glad to have the contract negotiations completed.
Colorado Rockies starting pitcher Kyle Freeland spoke to the media, including Rox Pile, about his contract extension before Wednesday’s game. One of the things he talked about was trying to get a deal done ASAP so that he can focus on pitching.
“I definitely wanted to get this done that way everyone involved can focus on what they need to focus on and I can allow myself to focus on what I need to do and that is pitching baseball games and winning,” Freeland said.
That was evident on Tuesday when Freeland has his best start of the season thus far.
|one||Apr 8||CABBAGE||THE D||L,3-5||L(0-1)||3.2||5||5||5||two||6||12.27||74||44||35|
|1-2||WL:0-2||14.0||twenty||12||12||5||10||7.71||2. 3. 4||64%||38|
Freeland described how despite there being “a lot of different emotions” with contract negotiations, his wife helped him out “a ton” in the last week or so after he realized that he loves being around the people that are in the clubhouse now.
“Whenever contracts are negotiated I feel like, with anybody, there is going to be back and forth,” Freeland said. “A lot of different emotions are going to be flying around on both sides. But, ultimately, ended up extremely happy with what we have, what we have moving forward. Both sides are happy. When I talked with Bill (Schmidt, Rockies GM) after we settled on everything, he was extremely happy. I am happy. My family is happy. So overall, happy.
“Ultimately, for me, my wife helped me out a ton with this decision. I looked around this clubhouse two starts ago, I was sitting at my locker, I saw a lot of my teammates in there. These are guys that I love going to battle with that I want to continue to go to battle with. I love hanging out. I love coming to the ballpark and spending time with them. That goes top to bottom — players and staff, trainers, training staff, strength coaches, coaches and front office. When I told my wife that, about a week or so ago, she was like — you know what — ‘I am going to stop you right there. That’s your answer right there.’”
Freeland is also very excited for the future of the Rockies and thinks that Rockies fans should be too.
“Be very excited for the future,” said Freeland. “(General Manager) Bill (Schmidt) and the front office have done an incredible job of helping us line up what we need to line up starting right now and moving forward. So I would say to the fans be very excited for this year and the years to come for what we have going.”
Freeland says that part of the reason why you should buy into the Rockies is their core group of players.
“Look at the group of guys that we have right now,” said Freeland. “A strong core group of us have been together for a long time and are sticking together for the next handful of years so that right there shows that we are bought into winning. We are bought into getting to the playoffs, winning in the playoffs, and also winning the World Series with the Colorado Rockies.”
And being from Denver, Freeland also talked about Coors Field and the thought that it is difficult to pitch at altitude.
“You shouldn’t be afraid just because of the factors here in Colorado,” Freeland said. “You got to look at it as a challenge to take it on. It’s exciting to show that you can have success here at Coors Field altitude. If that’s something you want to chase after, I say go for it.”
With being a Denver kid, Freeland could have a legacy with the team unlike others of the past. But, so far, Freeland hasn’t thought much about it… yet.
“I haven’t thought too much about it (his legacy) just because of the craziness of the past few days. But it’s something that I’ll definitely start thinking about — the kind of impact that I want to leave on and off the field here in Colorado. Whether it’s helping out with Special Olympics or the numbers that I do for my career statistics, those are things that I am going to have to sit down and think about and find out what I truly want to accomplish here.”