Jhoulys Chacin watched Adam Wainwright demonstrate how to win the game with his pitches and bat two nights ago. He decided that he can do it with one swing before he stepped to the plate in the third inning. He was swinging for the fences and he got a hanging slider that was deposited in left field seats to even the score at 2-2. That started a home run derby that was won by the Rockies.
The Rockies pitching staff struggled with command tonight issuing seven walks and a hit batsman. Part of the frustration was with home plate umpire Paul Schrieber who called virtually all pitches in the bottom fifth of the zone balls. Despite the free passes, Arizona scored all of their runs on home runs with the exception of a single run in the ninth. Charlie Blackmon broke a 2-2 tie with a solo shot off southpaw Tony Sipp. Josh Rutledge followed up with a single and coming home on a Corey Dickerson 2-run blast off the façade of the second deck. Tulo added another two-run moonshot into the rock garden for a good measure. The final score was 9-4, mathematically eliminating the Dbacks from post season considerations. Chacin raised his record to 14-9 with a 3.21 ERA on the season.
This evening there a verbal understanding between the management and Walt Weiss that he will be back next year on a possible two-year contract. Nothing is official yet. Weiss has been a good fit for the team’s character and chemistry and he should be able to manage the game better next year after going through on the job training this year. The top two pitchers (JDLR & Chacin) have combined for 30 wins this year. Who would have thought it would have happened? But the Rockies have been burned all year by the #5 pitcher who combined for zero (?) wins.
Game two is set for tomorrow night (Saturday) at 6:10 p.m. MT. JDLR’s start has been pushed back and it will be Collin McHugh instead going against Trevor Cahill.