Arenado Recalled; Nelson Designated

Wade Miley walked Dexter Fowler 3 times.  In the 1st he walked Fowler, Jordan Pacheco, Troy Tulowitzki, and Michael Cuddyer.  He did however, throw a first pitch strike to Carlos Gonzalez, which prompted the All Star to swing at the next two, rapping the second to Arizona Diamondbacks 2nd-baseman Josh Wilson, who turned it into a 4-6-3 double play.  10 of Miley’s next 16 pitches were balls, but he struck Wilin Rosario-out on the 17th and Arizona went-on to defeat the Colorado Rockies 3-2 in 10 innings on a warm spring night at Chase Filed in Phoenix.

There was big news in the aftermath of the Rockies frustrating and poorly played defeat.  3rd-baseman Nolan Arenado, who had torn it-up in early Spring Training and was hitting .364 with 3 homers and 21 whopping RBI at AAA Colorado Springs got the call to The Show, and long-time farm-hand Chris Nelson was designated for assignment.  The 98-loss 2012 Colorado squad had three glaring weaknesses to shore-up, starting pitching, road offense, and overall defense.  The jury is still out on the former, but the defense has been considerably improved in 2013, with the exception of 3rd base, where Nelson, Reid Brignac, and Ryan Wheeler have committed 7 of the Rockies’ 15 errors.  Two lousy throws Friday night may have sealed Nelson’s fate.

Speculation now is where Arenado will hit.  Nelson had been working primarily out of the 8-hole, a tough spot for a rookie to break-in.  Josh Rutledge has struggled batting 2nd, but has a big swing and strikes-out frequently.  Pacheco, hitting 2nd recently with Todd Helton on the Disabled List, profiles as an exceptional candidate, as, blasphemy aside, does Helton.

Chris Nelson is no-doubt bitterly disappointed, but the move may in fact prove a relief.  It has clearly been only a matter of time before Arenado would be promoted, and neither Nelson nor Brignac had remaining options.

Gonzalez is now 4 for his last 34.  He laid-down a bunt single in the 3rd, but popped-out with runners on 1st and 3rd in the 5th, and with a runner on 3rd in the 7th.  He grounded-out to short with one out in the 10th.  The Rockies left the bases loaded in the 1st and 5th.  In the 8th Michael Cuddyer and Wilin Rosario led-off with singles, but Cuddyer was picked-off 2nd when Miguel Montero made a lucky snag of a David Hernadez pitch in the dirt, then Rosario got doubled way-off 2nd base on a Josh Rutledge line-drive to right-fielder Gerardo Parra.

Jeff Francis started for Colorado and turned in 5 competent innings on the heels of 3 consecutive bad outings.  He surrendered a 1-out solo homer to AJ Pollock in the 1st, and got burned for another run three batters later when Cody Ross sliced a soft triple down the right field line with Montero, who had singled, on 1st.  Francis exited after 83 pitches (55 strikes), allowing 4 hits and 2 bases-on-balls with 2 strike-outs. Miley lasted only 4-1/3, eventually walking 7.  He threw 98 pitches (52 strikes), but left without giving-up a run.

The Rockies scored one in the 6th on a Rosario homer, and one in the 7th when Tulowitzki knocked in Fowler, who had led-off with a double.

Adam Ottavino followed Francis and contributed 5 outs, Rex Brothers got one, and Wilton Lopez and Matt Belisle 3 each before Pollock led-off inning 10 with a single off Edgmer Escalona (1-1, 3.14).  Pollock stole 2nd and moved to 3rd when Rosario’s throw was wild.  Ross ended it with a deep fly to center.  JJ Putz
(2-0, 4.09) picked-up the win for the D’backs.

Colorado will look to salvage a split when the Division rivals meet for a fourth game on Sunday afternoon, a 2:10 MDT start in the desert, where it’s expected to break 100° for the 1st time in 2013.  Jon Garland
(2-1, 4.68) will go for the Rockies against Arizona’s Patrick Corbin (2-0, 1.71).

 

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Cisco Kid
Cisco Kid
7 years ago

Renck of DP reporting Chris Nelson has been DFAd.

GARY
GARY
7 years ago
Reply to  Cisco Kid

Several teams could use Nelson.The left side of the Pirates infield has Sanchez hitting .188 at third and everyones favorite-Clint Barmes hitting a robust .130.I don’t get a paper regularly but Fridays peruseal of box scores had several other teams with 3rd baseman at or below the Mendosa line.Isn’t it time to package some of our AAA surplus with Nelson and maybe get a first base prospect as a for instance?

rockymountainhigh
Admin
rockymountainhigh
7 years ago

Here comes Arenado! I was getting inpatient with Nelsons long slow swing. Reminded me of Brad Hawpe . That swing has a short life span.

sdcarp
sdcarp
7 years ago

Good move. Sort of interesting timing. If I understand the whole service time thing correctly (and maybe I don’t), waiting a few more weeks could have delayed his arbitration clock 1 more year. So in a sense – I like the timing – because it says we’re playing to win.

You don’t bring him up to sit him.

TJinPhoenix
TJinPhoenix
7 years ago

That was the old Rockies last night…hopefully a one game occurrence. Excited to see Arenado…I just hope for a decent start for him so he doesn’t wear a trail on I-25. It’s got to be tough to walk that fine line between giving him time and hurting the team if its a slow start for him.

Mike Raysfan
Mike Raysfan
7 years ago

It was well known Arenado was coming up. That was known about 2 weeks ago. The big difference now is Nelson. I’m sure it will be hard for some to believe but then the question was who stays. You have to wonder if they had a specific pitcher in mind and Arenado may have been a carrot. Looks like that is all by the wayside now.

Julian
Julian
7 years ago

Interesting. I’m surprised that they didn’t wait for a few weeks until the service issue deadline passed, as the Giants did with Posey a few years ago. And I’m surprised that they’d DFA Nelson, versus sending Wheeler back to AAA, unless they have a trade worked out for him. It feels a little haphazard.

Cisco Kid
Cisco Kid
7 years ago

Surprised they’re pulling the plug on Nelson so quickly. If folks are expecting better defense from Arenado, you may be a bit disappointed. He’s already committed 5 errors this season in CS. As long as the team is tweaking the lineup, how much patience do they exercise with Ruttledge before they send him down. He’s hitting .210 and DJ LeMahieu is tearing it up at CS at a .360 clip.

Mike Raysfan
Mike Raysfan
7 years ago
Reply to  Cisco Kid

I agree Cisco. Especially if you look at the numbers. Look at Nelson’s numbers for this season so far and then look at Rutledge’s. Hmmmm

There are things that the Rockies do that just mystifies me. Reminds me of the Rays – the early years. Not that long ago Chris Nelson was the future. The golden boy at 2nd base. He got the 3rd highest signing bonus in Rockies history.

Agbayani
Agbayani
7 years ago

Excellent write-up Jeem. Raysfan, not surprising that Arenado is coming up, but the timing (which would make him a Super 2 arbitration eligible guy down the road) and the dumping of Nelson (rather than Brignac or optioning Herrera) does surprise me a bit. I know some folks disagree with me, but LeMahieu is hitting .366/.392/.479 at the Springs an we know he’s a really good fielding second baseman. I’d complete the infield now by swapping him with Rutledge (.210/.278/.346 with… Read more »

jeem
jeem
7 years ago
Reply to  Agbayani

Thx Ag. The LeMahieu-Rutledge swap seems to be a no brainer. I thought LeMahieu proved he belonged last summer + Rutledge is showing he needs more time. I think LeMahieu can become a very good player.

rockymountainhigh
Admin
rockymountainhigh
7 years ago

The reason we didn’t option another player down was that Arenado had to be added to the 40-man roster. Somebody had to be DFA’ed. Brignac was kept because he can play third, short, and second.

Troy says cargo will sit today so I’m predicting EY, Dex, Arenado, Tulo, Cuddyer, Rosario, Pacheco, and Rutledge lineup today.

Cisco Kid
Cisco Kid
7 years ago

Rosario sits today because of the day game following a night game and the game going into extra inn.

I doubt they put a rookie making his MLB debut batting third in lineup. Given that Cargo will probably get the day off as well to clear his head, I would expect Tulo to bat third. Expect NoDo to bat 7th in the order today.

Agbayani
Agbayani
7 years ago

Thanks RMH for the clarification on the 40 man roster. I hadn’t thought of that. Orange, I agree with you that I hate to give up on # 1 picks until it’s obvious they aren’t making it. That’s why I was in favor of starting playing Nelson the last couple years. For me, the turning point was seeing that his defense just isn’t acceptable, and despite what they’ve been saying, it’s not getting better. If he had been able to… Read more »

OrangeRocks
OrangeRocks
7 years ago

There has to be something else trade wise that either is or will be in the works here. While not great defensively/offensively Nelson and Brignac could hold down third base for another few weeks. Brignac hits left handed so that gives the Rockies a chance to substitute in the lineup another left handed bat against a righty starter, so I get not moving him. Just don’t like giving up on #1 draft picks until it is obvious that they won’t… Read more »

lwesche
lwesche
7 years ago

They must have someone that wants Nelson, otherwise I would of thought they would of DFAed Herrara, or is there some other reason to keep him? Just asking…….

After that mess last night, I look for the Rockies to come out and 10 run the Dbacks. Wishful thinking??? That game last night was hard to watch.

rockymountainhigh
Admin
rockymountainhigh
7 years ago
Reply to  lwesche

Herrera would not be DFA because he has an option left. Wheeler was brought up because he can play first base in place of Helton.

lwesche
lwesche
7 years ago

Knew someone would know…thanks!

Bill
Bill
7 years ago

Glad they finally pulled the trigger. A little strange that they brought Wheeler up first and put him at 3rd the other night. But then again DoD does alot of strange things. Maybe if Helton is out for longer spell Pacheco and Wheeler split 1st? Who knows. Last night’s game was tough. Mr. and Mrs. Sunshine (Goodman and Huson) were saying how much Rosario’s defense had improved. Then a 2 base WP or BP and the poor throw to 2nd.… Read more »

DrRockies
Editor
DrRockies
7 years ago
Reply to  Bill

reported that Arenado will hit 7th today. Good move and not that surprised at Nelson. He has lingered for 7+ years trying to find a spot. I remember Drew talking earlier out of camp that they would probably wait at least a month for Rutledge to show how he handled things so I would expect DJ up shortly. We still need one of the outfielders to be brought back up. Junior in place of Cargo isn’t something I look forward… Read more »

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