For the second game in a row the Rockies not only were unable to win, but were also unable to score any runs. After a 12-4 win in game one of the series against the Tigers on Friday, the Rockies were outscored 9-1 over the next two games.
The lineup manager Jim Tracy put on the field was different with Carlos Gonzalez being a late scratch. Eric Young Jr in left field instead of Gonzalez had to have Tigers hitter salivating. I would’ve like to have seen Tyler Colvin in left and Helton playing first instead of having his usual Sunday off.
If there is one thing that bothers me about Jim Tracy it’s his inconsistent lineups. We went through this with Clint Hurdle alot of the time. Stop tinkering with the lineup like it’s a Double A minor league team. The Rockies have proven themselves to be a major league team in name only, with a minor league mentality from the front office, to the manager and coaching staff, to at times the play on the field.
The Rockies have the day off tomorrow as they head to Philly for a 3 game series before returning to interleague play against the Rangers at the end of the week.
Tuesdays probables ROCKIES – Josh Outman(0-2, 8.44) PHILLIES – Cole Hamels(9-3, 3.34)
The Rockies win streak has now reached 5 games after last night’s 13-3 pounding of the Dodgers. Fowler,, Scutaro, Gonzalez, Cuddyer and Helton each had multiple hits on the night, going a combined 11 for 20 and 5 RBIs. Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario led the team in RBIs with 3, including a 2 run shot in the 6th off Dodgers starter Chris Capuano. The Dodgers didnt help matters any defensively committing 4 errors on the evening.
Dexter Fowler continues swinging a hot bat, going 3 for 5 with 2 RBIs. In the first five games of the current homestand Fowler is 13 for 22(.590) and 8 RBIs, scoring 11 runs. Fowler is now 3rd on the team with 28 RBIs following Gonazlez(45) and Cuddyer(36), second in batting average(.294) and second in homeruns(8) tied with Rosario and Tulowitzki.
The Rockies at 22-29 are a half game behind the D’backs for 3rd place, who lost 7-1 to the Padres last night. Saturday’s probables are Juan Nicasio(2-2, 5.11) for the Rockies against Aaron Harang(3-3, 4.14)
Well on paper, it doesnt look good for the Rockies going into this series. The Rockies are 23-49 on the road against the Braves, 18-31 at Turner Field. The Rockies last had a winning record against the Braves at Turner Field in 2005 with a 2-1 record. The one win last season was Ubaldo Jimenez’ no hitter, the first in Rockies history.
The Braves come into this series winning 7 of their last 10 games, 4 games back of division leading Phillies. While the Rockies went 4-6 in their last 10 games, 6.5 games back of the Giants and 3 back of the D’backs and also sporting a 19-21 road record.
THE HOT LIST – Mark Ellis(2B/Rockies) – 8 for 15 with 2 homeruns and 7 RBIs in his first 3 games with the Rockies since the trade from Oakland. Todd Helton(1B/Rockies) – 10 for 20 in last 5 games with 4 walks and 4 RBIs. Carlos Gonzalez(OF/Rockies) – 11 for 24 in his last 6 games. 6 RBIs in yesterday’s game against the Royals. Brian McCann(C/Braves) – team leading .314 batting average and 10 for 21 in last 5 games.
THE NOT LIST – Charlie Blackmon(OF/Rockies) – 6 for 34(.176) in his last 10 games. Could be the player to watch in the series as he returns home to Georgia, if he doesnt press. Blackmon’s hometown is Suwanee, Ga and he played college ball at Georgia Tech. Chris Iannetta(C/Rockies) – Remains on our NOT list with a .227 average. 6 for 30 in last 10 games, but did go 3 for 3 against the Royals on 7/2. Jason Heyward(OF/Braves) – 6 for 25 last 6 games, with 1 homerun and 2 RBIs. Dan Uggla(2B/Braves) – .175 battting average through 85 games.
Tonight’s probables are Ubaldo Jimenez(3-7, 4.35) against Tommy Hanson(9-4, 2.62).
After losing the last two series, against the Yankees on the road and the White Sox at Coors Field, the Rockies with last night’s 9-6 win over the Royals assured themselves of winning the 3 game series. The Rockies jumped out to a huge 7-0 lead after just two innings. The top of the lineup, Gonzalez, Ellis, Helton, Tulowitzki, and Smith went 11 for 21 with 7 RBIs. Newest Rockies Mark Ellis continues his hot hitting with a 3 for 5 night. Chris Iannetta himself had a perfect night going 3 for 3 with an RBI. The only position player starting the game for the Rockies without a hit was outfielder Charlie Blackmon(0 for 3). Ryan Spilborghs went 0 for 1 in a pinch hitting role.
Huston Street recorded his 24th save of the season, tying him for first in the league with 4 others.
Rockies starter Greg Reynolds got his 3rd win of the season(3-0) with a 5 inning effort giving up 8 hits and 5 RBIs. The Rox will (dare I say it) go for the sweep this afternoon with Jason Hammel(4-7, 4.02) against Colorado native Luke Hochevar(5-8, 4.96) for the Royals. Not exactly a dream matchup on the mound, but with the records of both starting pitchers, this could be an interesting game. Can the Rockies offensive onslaught continue? The Rockies have scored 18 runs in the first 2 games of the series.
The Rockies have now won 3 straight and are a single game below getting back to .500. Holding a 6-0 lead going into the 9th inning, the Rockies almost gave the game away as the Dodgers scored 5 runs on 5 hits in the final inning. Jhoulys Chacin was dominant over 8 innings only allowing 3 hits, striking out 9 and improving his record to 7-4 with a 2.90 ERA.
On the offensive side of the ball, the Rockies banged out 17 hits, with Carlos Gonzalez leading the way going 4 for 5. Chris Nelson had a 3 for 5 night, but it was the “Toddfather” Todd Helton who with his current .322 average who got the Rockies offense started. Helton went 2 for 4 with 2 RBIs and a run scored. Seth Smith also had a 2 RBI night while Tulo, Wiggy, and Iannetta each recorded multiple hits on the night.
The 6 run lead in the 9th inning seemed safe as Matt Belisle took to the hill in relief for Chacin. But 29 pitches later the Dodgers had rattled Belisle for 4 runs(1 earned), before Huston Street came along to finish out the inning, also giving up a run in the process. Rockies fans were more than on edge to say the least in the 9th inning.
The Rockies sit in the 3rd place in the NL West 4.5 games out of first place behind the Giants and 2.5 games back of the second place D’backs.
Remember back to last season when fans and the media alike thought the Rockies couldnt hit and many were calling for then hitting coach Don Baylor to be fired? Well I have to say that I am not hearing or reading the same sentiment this season towards Carney Lansford as the Rockies seem to be worse off so far this season offensively.
Todd Helton (.306)has been the only Rockie all season to remain consistent at the plate and one of two Rockies batting over .300. The other being Seth Smith is currently batting .312. The next player closest to .300 is Jonathan Herrera with a .279 average and only 2 more players with a .250 average or better in Amezaga (.250) and Gonzalez (.251).
Since the two game sweep of the Giants (May 16-17), the Rockies have lost 6 of their last 8 games, and 4 of those 6 losses were 1 run games. The Rockies are ranked 23rd out of 30 teams in batting average with a team average of .242. The Dodgers(17th), D’backs(20th), and Giants(21st) each rank higher. Putting that in greater perspective with the Rockies who are also ranked 9th in runs scored while the Dodgers(26th), Padres(28th), and Giants(29th) are each ranked in the bottom 5 of the same category.
The Rockies need to right the ship offensively, no doubt. We all know that. The players, coaching staff, fans, media, etc. We all know that. But here is the good thing. It’s still only May. Sure the Rockies are in third place today, but we are talking about only by a half a game and 3 games behind the Giants who are in first. So what I am saying is….There is no need to hit the panic button! Yes we’re frustrated at how the team has played this month, but every team each season goes through a slump of some kind. Ours just happens to be alot longer than it should be.
The Rockies get back at it tonight with Clayton Mortensen(1-1, 2.17) against Micah Owings(0-0, 5.06).
Jason Giambi got the start tonight in place of an ailing Todd Helton(stiffness). Jim Tracy suggested a minor change in the stance of Giambi before the game after a brief film study. And with the adjustment Giambi made good on the night with his first 3 homerun game of his career. Giambi accounted for all 7 runs the Rockies scored tonight. Giambi went 3 for 5 with 3 homeruns and 7 RBIs, with all three homeruns coming in his first three at-bats.
While Giambi accounted for one-fifth of the Rockies hits, there were 3 other Rockies with multiple hits on the night. Jose Lopez went 4 for 5, Seth Smith went 3 for 4 and Jonathan Herrera, 2 for 5. Tulo, Gonzalez and Fowler each getting one hit a piece.
Jhoulys Chacin improved his record to 5-2 on the season with a 9 strikeout performance over 7 innings, allowing only 1 walk and 1 run.
The Rockies head to Milwaukee for a 3 games series before returning to Coors Field.