Rox Manage 14 Game Run 9-5; Giants to Visit After 2 in LA
The Colorado Rockies posted-up another winning mark in week 2 of the 2017 MLB season, taking 3 of 4 from the San Francisco Giants over the weekend at AT+T Park after a disappointing series loss to the San Diego Padres earlier in the week at Coors Field. The injury bug continued to dog them, as it turns out right-hander Jon Gray has, or has had, depending on how much credence you give to team physician Bud Black’s assertion that “this is different,” a broken toe and is lost for a minimum of 4 weeks, which, as discussed elsewhere on the RWO, is a crock of beans.
Gray injured the toe on a landing after fielding a Baltimore chop in Thursday evening’s showdown with the Mad Bum of San Francisco. The Rockies went-on to defeat the Giants 3-1 behind a 2-run Trevor Story homer and 6 innings of 1-run relief from Chris Rusin and the Colorado bullpen. The bad news came the following morning, and the Rockies succumbed to Johnny Queto with very limited gusto on Friday night, but then Saturday and Sunday afternoons unleashed consecutive starting pitching masterpieces, and head to Los Angeles for 2 with the Dodgers behind a head of steam.
While Story’s shot did little to break him out of his slump (he’s got only 4 other hits and has already struck out 20 times in 2017), the rest of the Colorado offense shifted into gear, especially if you give them credit for being at AT+T and contending with the San Francisco pitching. Charlie Blackmon went deep twice and DJ LeMahieu had 10 hits in 25 at-bats to break out of his early funk. But among the better offense and continued stingy relief from the ‘pen, the number of superior performances delivered to-date by the starting rotation is fairly remarkable, especially when you consider it is the Colorado Rockies who are being discussed.
Antonio Senzatela was pretty slick in his opening 5 inning appearance in Milwaukee. He was better the second time around Tuesday in the sole victory over San Diego, then pretty-much matched it yesterday to secure the series over the Giants. He’s been cool and collected and from all appearances seems to have “what it takes.” There were the 6 one-run innings Kyle Freeland tossed-up at the Dodgers in the home opener, and then Saturday Tyler Chatwood turned in a CG, besting San Francisco on 2 hits and a walk over the distance, striking-out 4 as the Rockies beat the Giants 5-0.
On the down side Freeland got banged-around pretty severely by the Padres in his second start on Wednesday, and Tyler Anderson was less than effective again in the Friday loss to Cueto, when he also got nicked by the officiants for two balks, which leads me to wonder whether the ultra-competitive left-hander may well have developed a reputation around the league for being what back in Georgia we used to call a “red-ass,” depriving himself perhaps of the always prized Benefit of the Doubt. In spite of the recent extended starts from Senzatela and Chatwood, the ‘pen has continued to shoulder an alarming load, and Story’s struggles may be lending the Rockies some unwelcome wriggle room when Cristhian Adames’ dearth of options comes up for discussion as Ian Desmond, Tom Murphy and David Dahl begin their returns to health.
Freeland (1-1, 5.91) goes back out tomorrow night against the Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu (0-2, 5.79) at 8:10 pm at Chavez Ravine. Anderson will slide into Gray’s slot as the no. 1 and faces-off against the great Clayton Kershaw on Wednesday. The Rockies get yet another off day on Thursday, this one at home before hosting San Francisco back at the old ball field in LoDo on the weekend. RMH will set you up on that before it happens Friday.