After spending four hours and eight minutes losing to Philadelphia on Sunday, the Colorado Rockies thought they might as well do it again, at least for the first three innings on Monday night. Jorge De La Rosa threw 27 pitches in the top of the 1st inning to four batters without allowing a run. San Francisco Giants’ starter Ryan Vogelsong was less economical, tossing-up 46 fat ones that the Rockies translated into a 4-run lead they built-upon to deliver an 8-2 victory over the Giants at Coors Field in Denver.
3rd-baseman Nolan Arenado got things started with a 1-out solo homer deep to center-field. Vogelsong got Carlos Gonzalez on a grounder for the 2nd out, but then he walked Troy Tulowitzki, who was doubled-over to 3rd by NL Player of the Week Justin Morneau. That brought catcher Wilin Rosario to the plate, and the Baby Bull promptly deposited Vogelsong’s 3rd pitch into the left-field pavilion for a
4-0 Rockies’ lead.
Colorado added a run in the 2nd when Charlie Blackmon led-off with the first of 2 towering homers to right, then Vogelsong (0-1, 7.71) gave up a single to Arenado and walked Tulowitzki, and after 59 pitches (32 strikes) in 4/3 of an inning, San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy brought-on David Huff, who got Morneau to ground into an inning-ending double-play. Huff strained a quad legging-out a base-hit to lead-off the Giants’ 3rd, which brought Yusmeiro Petit to the hill as the Rockies stepped-up in the bottom of the inning.
Petit pitched as if there were several alternative establishments in the Lodo area where his time could be better spent. Rosario led-off with a single and came home on a long blast to left-center by Colorado center-fielder Corey Dickerson, making it 7-1 (tacos people, tacos), and DJ LeMahieu followed with a ground-double down the right-field line before Petit walked Blackmon on 5 pitches. Dave Righetti came to the mound and apparently mentioned something to Petit about how precious jobs in Major League Baseball can become, because the right-hander quickly got Arenado and Gonzalez to end the 3rd, and went-on to hold the Rockies hitless through the 6th.
De La Rosa (1-3, 6.38) meanwhile bumbled his way through 5 innings on 102 pitches (59 strikes), allowing a run on 5 hits with 3 walks and 5 strike-outs. It is unknown whether the confusing and inscrutable calls pitch calls Rosario was making behind the plate affected his performance. De La Rosa got through the 2nd unscathed, although it took him another 17 pitches, then Huff’s lead-off single in the 3rd was followed by Angel Pagan and Hunter Pence base hits, and suddenly the Giants had the bases loaded with nobody out. DLR sucked-it-up, surrendering a run on Buster Posey’s double-play grounder and striking-out Michael Morse. He was back in it in the 4th when Pablo Sandoval reached on an Arenado error, his 4th, and a Brandon Belt single. But De La Rosa had a pitcher’s best-friend again, as Brandon Hicks grounded into a double-play and Brandon Crawford lined to left. In the 5th it was a 1-out walk to Pagan and a ground-rule double by Pence (that worked in Colorado’s favor) that had DLR in the soup again, but he got a sharp grounder to 3rd from Posey that froze the runners and struck-out Morse again for his first 2014 victory.
Tommy Kahnle, “Rule 5” (take note RMH– that’s a keeper), handled the 6th and 7th, striking-out 5, Adam Ottavino turned-in a 1-2-3 8th, and Chad Bettis gave-up a run in an adventurous 9th inning to close things-out. They managed to get it in in a mere 3:13, thanks largely to the regroup by Petit.
The Rockies have a chance to get a good thing going, with a couple of tough home contests before the trip to LA. They send Frankie Morales (1-1, 4.82) out against Madison Bumgarner (2-1, 3.48) later today, and then it’s Tyler Chatwood v Matt Cain on Wednesday afternoon. Game-time tonight is 6:40 MDT.