Hardball and Heartbreak

Rox Walk Off on Dbacks
Jays on for 3 Ahead of California Trip

The Colorado Rockies posted-up a 4-3 marker for the 11th week of their 2016 season, the 3 losses heartbreaking in nature, the wins, at least those over the Arizona Diamondbacks at Coors Field, hard won.  The Toronto Blue Jays visit for 3 starting at 6:40 MT tonight at the old ballpark.  Jon Gray (4-3, 4.80) goes for Colorado against Toronto’s Marco Estrada (5-3, 2.70).

The Rockies opened the week on a hangover in Miami, having lost 3-straight to the Marlins, but they salvaged the last of the 4 game set in south Florida behind Jorge De La Rosa and 5 solo home runs.  Tuesday they were 1500 miles north in New York City, and they continued their mastery of the Yankees with an 8-4 win.  Chad Bettis backed-up his resurgent performance from a week earlier with a 6-inning, 4-run, 8-hit outing.  From there the heartbreak set-in, and if I’ve got my history right, the 3 horrifying losses made it 6 total for the month, dating back to the June 7 Trayce Thompson walk-off in Los Angeles.

Wednesday it was a 4-run New York 7th, as Walt Weiss tried to get a bonus inning out of Jordan Lyles, who’d come on for Gray, who developed a case of “dead arm” in the 5th, that erased an 8-4 Rockies lead, and Starlin Castro greeted Jason Motte with a lead-off walk-off in the 9th.  Thursday back in Denver Colorado had overcome a 3-run Arizona lead to head to the 9th at 6-6, but 2-out singles by Jake Lamb, Chris Herman and Nick Ahmed doomed the Rockies and Carlos Estevez in the top of the inning.  Friday it happened again.  This time Colorado overcame 2-1 and 6-3 deficits to go up on the Dbacks 9-8, but Estevez gave up a solo-shot to Yasmani Tomas, and a double by Jean Segura, who was on base ALL weekend, and run-scoring Michael Bourn single brought the hammer down once more.

The Rox were back in the win column on Saturday, albeit with a struggle.  They went up 7-1 behind De La Rosa, then the ‘pen surrendered 5 between the 7th and 8th to make it 7-6, before a 4-run 9th that included a 3-run DJ LeMahieu shot sealed the victory.  Bettis was back out yesterday, and really stank-up the house.  He got down 2-0 out of the gate, Segura once again dancing around gleefully.  It was 3-0 in the 2nd, and 5-2 in the 4th before two walks and a single loaded the bases for a Carlos Gonzalez grand slam and 6-5 lead.  Bettis was having none of that, and immediately gave-up the slim lead, Segura singling, Bourn, who I thought was dead, doubling, and the exquisite Paul Goldschmidt knocking-in both with another single.  Trevor Story took Jake Barrett deep to center for a tie-game in the 7th.  In the 9th Story got hit in the hand leading-off and has apparently dodged a bullet as to-date nothing appears to be broken, and then with 2-out Mark Reynolds finally gave Colorado its first 2016 walk-off with a big fly over the center-field wall.

Gray is back out tonight, and the “shoulder fatigue” has supposedly passed, one of those things that “just happens” to Jon.  His outing Wednesday was for 4-plus, and he surrendered 4 runs on 3 hits with 5 walks.  Estrada was out Tuesday against our friends from Phoenix and took a loss.  He gave-up only 3 runs on 2 hits and struck-out 8, but the Dbacks prevailed 4-2.

Neither Story nor LeMahieu, who banged-up his knee in the 6th and was scheduled for an MRI today are in the Rockies’ order tonight.  Cristhian Adames will be at short and hit in LeMahieu’s no. 2 spot.  Reynolds slide up to Story’s customary no. 5 hole and Daniel Descalso will spell LeMahieu at 2nd, hitting 6th.  The Blue Jays are managed by John Gibbons and currently sit 3rd in the tough American League East, 5-games behind Baltimore and a game short of the Red Sox.  Ezequiel Carrera, Devon Travis, and Josh Donaldson lead the Toronto attack in the 1-2-3 slots.  Former Rockie Troy Tulowitzki hits 6th.

It’ll be about 86° at game time in Denver, with thunderstorms lurking around for the early going.  The wind will be gusty at 7-10 MPH, blowing in from right-center.  Relative humidity is 26%.  I’m guess Spilly will be back with Drew behind the ROOT mikes.  KOA am has the radio, blasting out at 850 hertz.

TORONTO (41-36)
Ezequiel Carrera (L) RF
Devon Travis (R) 2B
Josh Donaldson (R) 3B
Edwin Encarnacion (R) 1B
Michael Saunders (L) LF
Troy Tulowitzki (R) SS
Russell Martin (R) C
Kevin Pillar (R) CF
Marco Estrada (R) P

COLORADO (36-39)
Charlie Blackmon (L) CF
Cristhian Adames (S) SS
Nolan Arenado (R) 3B
Carlos Gonzalez (L) RF
Mark Reynolds (R) 1B
Daniel Descalso (L) 2B
Nick Hundley (R) C
Brandon Barnes (R) LF
Jon Gray (R) P

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4 years ago

Great win last night! Good to see Jon Gray none the worse for wear. Also appears that both Story’s and DJ’s injuries are relatively minor. I see no reason why tonight’s wont be another high scoring affair. Tomorrow – we get one of their young kids (Sanchez) who’s been a real solid SP for them. So getting a W tonight could be big.

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