"We'll have a better idea where we're at and what we're going to do to position ourselves toward [July] 31, so a lot will tell over the next four weeks," O'Dowd said Wednesday.
The Rockies have been tested by injuries to starting rotation members De La Rosa and right-hander Esmil Rogers, who hasn't thrown in the Majors since early May because of lat and midsection strains, as well as unexpected downturns by third baseman Ian Stewart and center fielder Dexter Fowler, both of whom have been sent to Triple-A Colorado Springs.
Although several call-ups have actually helped lift the Rockies out of their May slump and back to 2 1/2 games behind the National League West-leading D-backs going into Wednesday night's game against the Indians, pitching looks to be an area of need.
- 131 wins
- 121 wins
Righty Jhoulys Chacin, who made the season-opening rotation for the first time this year, and righty Juan Nicasio, called up last month from Double-A, hold a high level of responsibility given their inexperience. Chacin has been especially clutch, given that ace righty Ubaldo Jimenez is only beginning to approach his expected form.
"When you lose De La Rosa, we've had guys that have filled in admirably, but you're still missing a guy that was a huge piece of your starting rotation, O'Dowd said. "I said all along, even when we were struggling offensively for so long, I still feel the issues with our club are going to come down to our pitching.
"Jorge was at a perfect stage of his career to take that jump that it looked like he was about to take. If we were out looking for anything, it would be to continue to improve our pitching."
Veteran first baseman Todd Helton also said as much earlier Wednesday on The Jim Rome Show, saying the Rockies "need help" to reach their goals.
During the interview, Helton said the Rockies are good enough to be a playoff team now but that help, whether it's from a trade or someone in the Minor League system, would be needed to make them a World Series championship threat. He reiterated that when approached later Wednesday.
"Whether it's Esmil Rogers coming back healthy or some kid in the Minor Leagues or whatever, the reality of it is teams that do make it usually have somebody that's traded for or comes up from the Minor Leagues, kind of like Ubaldo [Jimenez in 2007] when he came up and pitched so well," Helton said.