The Rockies are officially above the .500 mark for the year! This game was lost by the Astros, with four fielding errors, as much as it won by the Rockies. In a game that featured a towering home run, and some excellent hitting to go around, there was much to appreciate about this retooled team.
Jeremy Guthrie was on the mound for Opening Day and all we’ve heard from the team, after picking him up, is how he is being brought in to eat up innings. And he for sure did not disappoint! He went seven innings, only allowing three runs on four hits. His ball look great at times, with good movement, while staying low in the zone. When he did make a mistake he was punished for it with back to back home runs from Lee and Bogusevic in the fourth. Lee’s towering shot left the stadium in a hurry. Guthrie quickly shook it off and got back to work, only allowing two more to reach until he left the game at the end of the seventh.
The Rockies bats didn’t fail them today, as every one of the starters made it to first at least once. The third inning was especially active, featuring the following:
- Scutaro Single
- Dex sacrifice bunt moving Scutaro to 3rd and Dex reaching 2nd on a throwing error
- Tulo sacrifice fly, scoring Scutaro
- Helton double, scoring Dex
- Cuddyer single, scoring Helton
- Cuddyer stealing second
- Hernandez single, Cuddyer to third
The key moments came late in the game as the entered the 8th, tied 3-3. Eric Young stole second and then, on a “wildish” pitch he started for third. Half way there he looked to be caught in a hot-box, but an errant throw to 2nd allowed him to round third and head home, scoring the go ahead run. Rex Brothers came into the game in the 8th and was absolutely filthy, striking out two. Then came the top of the 9th and Tulo wasted no time getting his first home run of the season, sending a ball up to the “3rd rail” where the Astro’s train lives in left field.
With the Rockies up 5 – 3 in the ninth, Rafael Betancourt came into his first save situation of the season. His stuff wasn’t anywhere near Brothers, but he did get the job done with some drama. After quickly (can that word be used to describe anything Betancourt does?) getting two outs, Rafael gave up a double to Travis Buck and then walked Jason Castro. With the winning run at the plate and fans hearts in stop-mode, Betancourt proceeded to strike out Matt Downs for the third out, putting a stamp on a successful opening day and giving the Rockies their first season win!
We had a nice chat session during the game. You can read a transcript of it below. There are also a ton of cool pictures from RWO’rs at the game: Bob in WV and RockyMountainHigh who ended up finding each other at the game. Those are below as well as pre-game info.
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============== PRE GAME WRITE-UP ==============
The last question needing to be answered coming into today was, “Who will be at the Hot Corner?” That question has finally been answered as it has been announced that Chris Nelson will start at third in the Rockies season opener in Houston.
Some interesting things to note about Opening Day, Astros and all things Rockies:
- Colorado is 10-9 all-time on Opening Day going 6-6 all-time on the road
- Last time the Rockies played Houston (9-25-11), they set a record for runs, hits (25, of which Pacheco had 4) and RBI’s in 19-3 victory, equaling largest margin of home defeat in Houston history (Thanks Cowboy for this stat)
- Helton has notched at least one hit in 12-straight Opening Day games. Streak is also the longest streak among active MLB players. (Thanks Alanna for this stat)
- Helton’s streak of 15-straight Opening Day starts for the same team is the longest active streak among MLB players. (Thanks Alanna for this stat)
- Opening day is often a family affair. Jamie Moyer will have his wife and seven of his eight kids in Houston today and tomorrow. Troy Tulowitzki flew out his father Ken for tonight’s game. (Thanks Troy for this Stat)
- Jeremy Guthrie is 2-1 with a 3.72 ERA (19 1/3 innings, 8 earned runs) in his three previous opening day starts, all for the Orioles. (Thanks Troy for this Stat)
- The team will be wearing new road uniforms. The pinstripes are gone. They will feature a gray top and pants. The pants have purple piping. In the lockers yesterday, the purple jerseys were also present. (Thanks Troy for this Stat)
- Astros will have Wandy Rodriguez on the mound, a player the Rockies claimed off of Waivers last August, but the deal was never finalized.
- Guthrie has gone 5+ innings in 46 consecutive starts…3rd best streak for active pitchers behind CC and Verlander! (Thanks Marc for this stat)
Some of the Players are fired up on twitter:
DEX: What time is it? GAMETIME! All the dogs in the house? *commence barking, growling noises, followed by some intense screaming GoRockies!!!
He also tweeted this picture from where “they” were eating breakfast with the following tweet, “We in Houston
@thebreakfastklub this place is packed!!! Line around the corner, let y’all know how it is!” Now sure who “we” is, but they look like they will be eating in style…
Jeremy Guthrie, an avid tweeter as well as MASSIVE shoe collector, tweeted the following from Houston:
Shoutout to the city of Houston, never seen so much Sneaker Swagg in a mall in my life! Jordans for daaays. Haha
He also gave his prediction for the World Series yesterday:
Enjoyed watching a ton of baseball today, excited for tomorrow. Anyone else feeling
@Rockies vs @Orioles world series in 2012?!?!
And CarGo even posted something for the fans:
Good morning baseball fans, the day is finally here
#Rockies #openingday in Houston. I feel on my best condition physically and mentally to begin the road to #Rocktober. That is the most important thing, stay healthy.
So, here is what the line-up looks like today for OPENING DAY!!!
LF Carlos Gonzalez
1B Todd Helton
RF Michael Cuddyer
C Ramon Hernandez
3B Chris Nelson
P Jeremy Guthrie
I don’t have confirmation on the exact order, but it is my best guess until I see it in print…
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