Brooks Punches Out Phillies in 4-1 Victory

Colorado has been using a very simple formula that always worked in the entire history of baseball.  The formula is pitch a good game and have enough offense to win. They did that completing a sweep at Philadelphia for the first time ever in  franchise history.  Jordan Lyles started the game, but Chris Rusin and Christian Bergman were told to be prepared to pitch if needed.  As semi-expected Lyles aggravated his big toe sprain and left after 1.1 innings leaving with runner on first base (4-pitch walk).  Walt Weiss chose to go with Rusin to change up from a righty to a lefty pitcher.  Rusin allowed the inherited runner to score on a Cameron Rupp double to cut the deficit to 2-1.  Vacuum gave the Rockies a quick lead hitting a two-run blast on the first pitch he saw in the first inning.

Rusin settled in and was in cruise control until the seventh inning.  Earlier in the 5th, D.J. LeMahieu hit a two-run homer that went into the first row to expand the Rockies lead to 4-1. Rusin issued the lead off walk and a couple of soft bloop singles to load up the bases with no outs. Brooks Brown was asked to come in and do some damage control.  He went above and beyond his duty to punch out three straight Philly batters to completely put out the four-alarm fire.

Christian Friedrich handled the eighth inning cleanly on just eight pitches.  With Rafael Betancourt and John Axford not available, Scott Oberg was handed the ball for the final three outs in his first career save opportunity.  He earned the save giving up just one harmless single.  He has been the closer throughout his professional career so it was not new to him except at the top level.

Colorado climbed above .500 away from Coors (14-13).  They also closed out the month of May with a flourish winning seven of its last eight games with the lone loss coming on a Cincinnati walkoff.  They are 11-7 since they left Anaheim on a 11-game losing streak.  It may not feel like it, but Colorado improved to 22-26 with a ten-game home stand coming up starting tomorrow against the Dodgers.  Tuesday will be a doubleheader and they will be allowed to add a 26th player to the active roster for the night cap.  It most likely will be David Hale who pitched last Thursday for Albuquerque.  Colorado needs to reverse their play at home; if they can go 7-3 that will bring the overall record back to .500 even.

Jordan Lyles is expected to go on the DL.  Jon Gray is supposed to start for Albuquerque tonight.  That would put Gray and Rusin on normal rotation schedule for the next Lyles start in the rotation.  I’m expecting Rusin to slide into the rotation while Bergman stays in the long relief role.

It was a great day for Colorado as they picked up a game on everybody (except SD who plays tonight) in the NL West.  Santiago Casilla blew the save and took a loss against the Braves.  Milwaukee walked off on Arizona in 17 innings.  The Cardinals nipped the Dodgers, 3-1.  Corey Dickerson was feeling pain-free and ready to take in a short rehab stint.  He should be back in the lineup within a week.  Punxsutawney Phil forecasts sunny and warm weather this week and hopefully the Rockies can be part of several conversations on the MLBN show.

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sdcarp
sdcarp
5 years ago

Very nice RMH. Didn’t realize Rusin/Gray were synced with Lyles…..good thinking!

I missed today’s game, but as I watch tonight’s Tigers/Halos game I’ve been looking at the standings and honestly there’s a great deal of parody around baseball at the moment. The Brewers are off the back, and the Twins and Astros are leading their respective Divisions…..but there are lots of teams in the 22-26 win range.

roxnsox
roxnsox
5 years ago

I like the atmosphere that I imagine in the clubhouse lately, and the flight home. A few wins, lighter hearts, better play ahead too? Also like the contributions and comments about the “second tier” players as it were, picking this team up. Cargo might even be finding it.

Agbayani
Agbayani
5 years ago

Guess who’s only 4.5 games out of a wild card now? Yeah, you can go all Jim Mora on me now. That’s what’s kind of good (or bad, depending on your perspective) about this 2 wild cards thing — a team that’s played as awful as the Rockies is actually still in the hunt. No reason for sdcarp to reconsider his big fire sale plan, but yes, I’m saying there’s a chance … of course, that’s what playing bad baseball… Read more »

sdcarp
sdcarp
5 years ago
Reply to  Agbayani

I outlined Nuclear (I always think of W when I say that word – it should be Nu Clar) and Coventional Fire Sale options. Honestly, there’s a third “Yard Sale” option that should be considered as well. “IF” the Rox get their shit together, have a great amateur draft, and get the kids signed, they really then need to focus on getting rid of Cargo and Morneau to allow room for Paulsen and Parker. At this point, they’re simply (some)… Read more »

Gary
Gary
5 years ago
Reply to  sdcarp

Unfortunetly Morneau’s return to concussion problems and Cargo’s non production make trading for much unlikely.Cargo is taking much better at bats and walking more and flailing less.It might help to bat him lead off[he can still run] and bat Blackmon farther down lineup as he is the better power/clutch type hitter right now.I just hope Justin’s career isn’t over as he has become a favorite of mine and he deserves a chance to finish his career on his own terms.

DonnyDinger
Admin
DonnyDinger
5 years ago

The bottom line on this road trip is the Rockies can play good baseball against bad teams. It’s definitely a confidence booster for the pitching staff to dominate games. The next step is to show what they can do with better competition. As I wrote a few days ago, turf toe is nasty. I’m surprised Lyles even started. Again, kudos to a guy wanting to go when he’s got a non-arm injury. Even better that Rusin was more than up… Read more »

sdcarp
sdcarp
5 years ago
Reply to  DonnyDinger

Clayton Kershaw rolls into Coors tonight with an ERA of 3.86. Very un-Kershaw like. Kershaw has also been giving up some dingers this year. Meanwhile, Chettis has an ERA of 2.96. There’s a joke in here somewhere!

Bob K.
Bob K.
5 years ago
Reply to  sdcarp

You really should look up just how bad Kershaw’s career ERA is at Coors. What he does everywhere else is much, much better than he does at Coors. Historically the Rockies knock Kershaw out of the game by the 5th inning at Coors and then give up a lot of runs to the Dodgers in the late innings to lose the games.

Agbayani
Agbayani
5 years ago

Just saw the highlights — DJ turned on an inside pitch and pulled it for a HR! OK, I’m not ready to believe the 2015 DJ is for real yet, but that’s the kind of thing hitting coaches have been waiting for.

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
5 years ago
Reply to  Agbayani

Monday Morning Match the Stat to the Player Game. Today’s rules – 2nd basemen. Stats current through last night. Offensive metrics only. One is a perennial all-star. One is a veteran, household name, borderline all-star. One is a post-hype star in the making. One is doubted by Ag. No cheating! Player 1 – BA=377 OBP=405 HR=0 RBI=14 R=29 SB=20 Player 2 – BA=335 OBP=385 HR=3 RBI=25 R=19 SB=4 Player 3 – BA=289 OBP=354 HR=7 RBI=21 R=19 SB=1 Player 4 –… Read more »

Bob K.
Bob K.
5 years ago
Reply to  sdcarp

Player #2 is DJ with SLG .441 and OPS .826 and WAR 1.2 currently 3rd in BA among MLB 2nd Basemen and first among NL 2nd Basemen. Also tied for 3rd place in RBIs among all 2nd Basemen.

Agbayani
Agbayani
5 years ago

Bob K. got it — DJ is definitely 2. 1 must be Dee Gordon with the high OBP and 20 SBs? 3 and 4 are tough. Cano and Howie Kendrick in no particular order? Why I still must doubt DJ: .389 BABIP. Career he’s at .337, which is still very good. Shave 60 points off his BA and OBP and you get a more realistic slash line of .275/.325/.441 (I’ll leave the SLG as is, assuming his slight increase in… Read more »

Agbayani
Agbayani
5 years ago
Reply to  Agbayani

My arithmetic was bad. I should have said “shave 50 points off DJ’s BA and OBP. Which means he’s done a little better than I gave him credit for. Plus some of the second basemen ahead of him are also beneficiaries of unsustainable BABIPs.

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
5 years ago
Reply to  Agbayani

You’re really close. You have 1, 2, and very nice on #4 – seemed appropriate with the Dodgers coming to town. Also – I believe Kendrick is due to be a FA this year and I’ve seen some high potential salaries associated with him.

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
5 years ago
Reply to  sdcarp

Hint – #3 is about at the same point in his career as Tulo and Cargo are in theirs. Ag – I’ve noticed the BABIP average for LeMahieu as well. You’re correct, it’s unsustainable. But…..he does put lots of balls in play, on the ground. So I won’t be surprised if his BABIP is always a little high. Also – I look past that because I’m using offensive stats only. Throw some defensive metrics in and his position gets solidified… Read more »

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
5 years ago
Reply to  sdcarp

FYI – #3 is Dustin Pedroia. Your Cano guess was excellent.

Big picture point is we conservatively have a top 10 2nd baseman for bottom 10 salary.

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