Ben Paulsen crushed the first pitch Albaladejo offered up in the 9th, sending it over the right field wall to end the Rockies 2nd Spring Training game in style. Perhaps we should start a “Walk Off” count on the site to keep track of how many we are witness to here on Rox Walk Off, because, as we all know, that is the most exciting way to end a game!
Other high notes of the afternoon came from the mound (Friedrich’s almost perfect 2 innings, only giving up a double) and the bats (EYj, Nelson, Pacheco, Rosario, Blackmon, Harris, Arenado and Herrera all getting a hit). We did have a few errors, but trading a few errors in the field for some hits/runs at the plate didn’t seem like a bad trade-off.
So far, what are your thoughts on the first two games? Any surprises?
========== GAME NOTES =============================================
FIRST INNING (2-1):
TOP: Chacin struggled from the first batter, giving up a lead-off double and then letting Hill reach on his throwing error. After calming down a bit he struck out Justin Upton on a fast ball down the middle, only to walk the next batter. A throwing error by Chad Tracy allowed 2 unearned runs.
BOTTOM: EYj started off with a hard hit single and then on a Scutaro called strike, stole second and made it to third on a throwing error. He was brought home by CarGo to make the score 2 – 1.
SECOND INNING (3-3):
TOP: Chacin gave up a two out solo shot to Parra before getting Hill to ground out.
BOTTOM: Pachenco singled to center and Blackmon moved him to second on a ground out at first. Arenado then stepped up and proved why everyone is talking about the kid, as he crushed a double to left, bring home Pachenco. Chad Tracy moved Arenado to third on a ground out and Johnny “Sparkplug” Herrera brought him home on a double.
THIRD INNING (3-3):
TOP: Christian Friedrich stepped on the mound to start the third and was very effective (K, 6-4, dbl and F7).
BOTTOM: Scutaro reaches first on an error by Ryan Roberts, only to get out as CarGo drove him into a double play. Giambi was issued a walk and promptly gave the bag to Chris Nelson to pinch run for him. Pacheco flew out to end the inning.
FOURTH INNING (3-4):
TOP: Friedrich back on the mound for his second inning of work, quickly striking out Krauss and then getting Blanco and McDonald to both pop-up to end the inning. Excellent work from Friedrich and our man on the scene, EdTheUmp, said he looked nice and easy on the mound like he belonged out there.
BOTTOM: Blackmon keeps the first batter streak going with a single to start the third. So far EYj, Pachenco and Blackmon all have singles to start their respective innings. With Arenado batting Blackmon stole third, testing the foot to make sure there are no lingering effects from the break last July that ended his 2011 rookie season. Arenado walked, putting runners on the corners with Chad Tracy coming up. Tracy delivered a sac fly to center bring Blackmon home. A wild pitch allowed Arenado to move to second, but he was stranded there as EYj was robbed of a single up the middle.
FIFTH INNING (3-4):
TOP: Only a slight hiccup for Matt Belisle took the ball to start the fifth. He quickly sits down the first two batters and thinks he has the side, but a borderline call sends Upton to first on a walk. Belisle proceeds to walk Goldschmidt before Overbay grounds out to Johnny to end the inning.
BOTTOM: Scutaro grounds out to begin the Fifth, ending the first batter streak at 4. Andrew Brown, who came into the game for CarGo, struck out swinging. Chris Nelson, in his first at-bat of the day, strikes out swinging.
SIXTH INNING (4-4):
TOP: Joe Gardner, the 3rd player in the Ubaldo trade, takes the mound to start the sixth and runs directly into Ryan Roberts bat, as Roberts deposits one of his fastballs into the center field grassy knoll. He strikes out Krauss and then walked Blanco. Blanco was moved over to 2nd on a groundout to first. Gardner then walked Parra to put runners on first and second. Hill then came up and walked to load the bases. Gardner under pressure got the ground-out to third to end the inning.
BOTTOM: (sorry guys, I have to step away so I can’t keep the updates coming…)
========== PRE GAME =============================================
The Rockies will meet the Diamonbacks again today for the 2nd time in 2 spring training games. Jhoulys Chacin will take the mound for his first start, hoping to prove why he should be considered the team ace come April. The rest of the line-up is as follows (Tulo is out of the line-up with an illness):