Hanging on to WC

sdcarp and company have been banging the drums loud and clear that Chatty should stay in the bullpen.  Wednesday night’s game showed why Chatty should be in the bullpen.  He cruised through the first three innings while being staked to a comfortable lead 5-0.  As usual the wheels came off when he went through the lineup the second and third time.  New York scored two, two, and six runs from the fourth inning until the sixth inning making the score 10-5 final in favor of the bad guys.  Gopherg didn’t help his own case giving up two more runs in just 2/3 inning after Chatty was sent to the showers.

The Rockies had to draw deep within their inner selves to walk off the pesky Mets on Tuesday and Thursday nights.  #NolanBeingNolan did the honors of being the walk off hero both times.  The opposing pitchers learned that walking guys is usually the formula for losing at Coors Field.  @Chuck_Nazty drew a lead-off walk before DJLM and NoDo did their thing with two singles to push Nazty home.

New trade acquisition Jonathon Lucroy made his first start on Thursday after sitting out the first two games with a 24-hour stomach bug.  Lucroy helped Marquez keep German Marquez in line giving up only single runs in three different innings when it could have been much worse.  Lucroy started the ninth inning rally that featured no hits with a HBP.  Then Nazty was intentionally walked to set up the double play.  But the double play machine in DJLM also walked to load the bases for NoDo.  Appropriately he walked off the game with a walk to put away the Mets to take the series 2-1.  The series win came after Colorado came home off a 2-1 series win over the Washington Nationals.

Colorado’s record now stands at an impressive 15 games over .500 at 62-47.  They remain 5.5 games ahead of Milwaukee, 8.5 ahead of St. Louis, and 9.5 ahead of Pittsburgh and Miami in the chase for the wild card spots.  The Rockies and Diamondbacks have been battling neck and neck for a while.  Entering Friday’s game, Colorado is 0.5 back of Arizona.  This weekend the Rockies are at home against the Phillies.  This is a prime opportunity to get a sweep and break away from the pack of WC chasers.  Kyle Freeland, Jon Gray, and Jeff Hoffman will be the men at work to lock down Philadelphia.  The only key they need to unlock the series sweep puzzle is sending two organizational fillers to the showers early.  Velasquez and Pivetta will be on the hill in the first two games while their “ace” Aaron Nola goes on Sunday.  They have to instill in him the fear of pitching at Coors.

In other minor news, Chettis will likely make one more rehab start on Tuesday and he is likely to rejoin the team afterwards.  Dustin Garneau was picked up by the Oakland A’s in the trade deadline waivers.  Common sense as AAABQ has Tony Wolters and Tom Murphy honing their skills in anticipation of their September call ups.  The weekend should give us an early report card on how Lucroy improves the pitching staff.  There was a hint on just his second day with his new club – he had a long conversation with Chatty after he was chased from the game Wednesday in the dugout.

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Agbayani
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Agbayani

Is Valaika now a better option than Story? I’ll admit it, I was a Valaika skeptic this spring when Carp was touting him as the surprise breakout of spring training. Valaika is certainly outhitting Story. Defense? Story has been good – he checks in as about average on advanced defensive metrics, and he passes the eye test. But now Valaika has a small body of work at SS – about 13 games total this year – and so far the… Read more »

sdcarp
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sdcarp

Regarding Valaika – what I saw this Spring was a “baller.” He instantly reminded me of Jedd Gyorko. Interestingly…..I think in the best case scenario, Story holds onto the SS role to allow Valaika to come off the bench as a PHer and maximize his multi-position flexibility. Regarding Chatwood….keep in mind I have skepticism regarding him in the BP. But….I know he shouldn’t be starting at the moment. I also know he’s a damn good raw talent. So I’m just… Read more »

sdcarp
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sdcarp

24 Year Old Starting Pitcher
3.16 ERA
1.18 WHIP
105 IP to date
110 K to date
Club controlled through 2022…..for cheap

This is a guy you’d like to have, right? Well……the Phillies have this guy, and the Rox face him today. Aaron Nola. One of the really, really good SPers in all of baseball that most haven’t heard of – to date.

Agbayani
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Agbayani

Nola is a good one, which is why I think the Phils will want to keep him if they’re hoping to contend within the next 2-3 years. They now have some talent in the system, and it looks as if the Marlins and Mets have just let their windows of opportunity slam shut with nary a whimper. Braves and Phils on the rise? Nats holding steady until their pitching starts to break down/their stars get too pricey? . Valaika: Carp,… Read more »

sdcarp
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sdcarp

Tough loss. As expected Nola was good. But so was Hoffman. I saw some things I liked: Tapia taking a walk as a pinch hitter. That’s a growth sign for sure. Lucroy taking a walk. You can tell that guy is a pro. Story’s defense is getting better and better. Greg Holland at 95 MPH on the gun. Even Pat Neshek looked OK. He gave up a couple of seeing eye weakly struck hits. More flukes than poor pitching. We… Read more »

Agbayani
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Agbayani

Dodgers: this is just sick. 44-7 in their past 51 games. A few weeks ago, at the ASB, I predicted they’d fall back to earth a bit. I was wrong. They have about a 14 game lead over the Nats for home field throughout the playoffs. It isn’t smoke and mirrors. Their expected pythagorean record (based on run differential) is only a game or two worse than their real world record. They may actually challenge the 2001 Mariners recent memory… Read more »

sdcarp
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sdcarp

2001 Mariners lost ALCS to Yankees 4-1.

Here’s how good the Dodgers are…….I’ve heard/read numerous reports that Clayton Kershaw feels great and could easily be back now. But I have no doubt the Dodgers will hold him out until late August simply to manage his innings and have him in (re)peak form by the end of September.

Free Ryan McMahon

Agbayani
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Agbayani

Yep, the playoffs are a crapshoot – that Mariners team not only had 116 wins, it also had 3 future Hall of Famers (assuming ARod gets in some day). Dodgers: I’m gonna stick to my prediction. They’ll tail off … a bit. I see a lot of guys having career seasons …

sdcarp
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sdcarp

I loved that 2001 Mariners team.

Bob K.
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Bob K.

Former Rockies manager Don Baylor dead at 68.

https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2017/08/don-baylor-passes-away.html

sdcarp
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sdcarp

I was a burgeoning Rox fan from afar (Asheville, NC – home of the Rox low A affiliate then and now) during Baylor’s Managerial stint. That was also about the time I started playing fantasy baseball as well. I quickly learned to get as many of Baylor’s offensive Rockies as possible. He always seemed like a cool guy. RIP.

roxnsox
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roxnsox

RIP Groove. Loved you here.

sdcarp
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sdcarp

Two games in an AL Ballpark (a good one at that!). So who is the Rockies DH tonight?

RAIMEL TAPIA

This should tell you just exactly how bad his defense has been. Corey Kluber (RHed) on the bump for the Indians. This will be a tough one.

Agbayani
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Agbayani

Tapia: advanced defensive stats agree with Carp’s eye test. Still a small sample size, but 20 runs below average (prorated to a 150 game basis) so far in 2017. That’s really bad. (this is Fangraphs’ ultimate zone rating stat, which is about the best out there). Another reason I’m still a Tapia skeptic. Baylor: Drew is talking about him right now. He was a force of nature as a young man, and a powerful personality as he matured. I didn’t… Read more »

sdcarp
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sdcarp

My thoughts on Tapia defensively – he has the tools to be above average, and therefore likely grades out well per some Scouts. But so far, at the Major League level, far too many mental lapses. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe he’s allowed three balls to pass between his legs so far this year. Lack of concentration? Jitters? Thinking too far ahead? I don’t know. Hopefully increased experience will allow him to calm down and increase his… Read more »

sdcarp
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sdcarp

Ouch – that hurt.

Holland’s run of extremely good fortune has obviously come to an end. Baseball is a never ending game of adjustments. The League has seen enough of post Tommy John surgery Holland to figure out some patterns and trends.

Bob K.
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Bob K.

Padres sign another Rockies offcast, Jordan Lyles, to a minor league deal.

https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2017/08/padres-sign-jordan-lyles.html

sdcarp
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sdcarp

Interesting read here: http://www.kansascity.com/sports/spt-columns-blogs/sam-mellinger/article166181787.html I’ve read a lot (especially recently) regarding the demise of Cargo, specifically people saying that can’t believe he fell off a cliff so quickly, implying that it’s unprecedented. It’s really not. The link above is to an article in the Kansas City newspaper regarding Alex Gordon. Generally similar scenario. It’s also happening to John Jaso in Pittsburgh, and even Brandon Belt (to a lesser extent) in San Francisco. I used a Cargo/Tim Lincecum analogy on Purple… Read more »