PHILS FINAL FOE ON TRIP;
CARDS AT YARD FOR DECORATION DAY
The Colorado Rockies are in the city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, getting set to play the Phillies in the first of four at 5:05 pm MT at Citizens Bank Park. They’ll subject their act to the scrutiny of the descendants of Benjamin Franklin, legitimate and illegitimate alike, as Jeff Hoffman (1-0, 5.40) gets another spot start, facing right-hander Jerad Eickhoff (0-4, 4,53) of Philadelphia.
Colorado executed week 7 of the 2017 MLB season 4-2, taking 2 of 3 from the Minnesota Twins in Minneapolis before heading further east and taking 2 of 3 from the Cincinnati Reds on its first venture east of the Mississippi since the campaign-opening series in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The offense continued to get looser. After Luis Berrios and two Twins relievers shut them out in the night cap of Thursday’s rain-induced double header, the second in as many weeks, the Rockies scored 26 in the 3-game series with the Reds, including 12 behind Tyler Anderson in the Friday night opener. The back end of the ‘pen also remains pristine. Closer Greg Holland tallied save 19, in 19 tries, in yesterday’s nail-biter in Ohio.
The starting hurlers, however, failed to provide much length. Yesterday’s starter, Kyle Freeland, ran out of gas in the 6th, making it through 5-2/3 after lasting 6 in Tuesday’s victory over Minnesota. German Marquez was only good for 5 in the 5-1 win in Thursday’s DH opener, and Tyler Chatwood was also gone after 5 in the night cap loss. Anderson got through 6 on Friday, but Antonio Sensatela had only 5 in him Saturday, when Colorado escaped his shaky outing with an 8-4 lead heading into the 6th.
After Jordan Lyles, who Ag tells us is pitching in terribly bad luck, gave back 4 of Friday’s 8-run lead in relief of Anderson, Rockies manager Bud Black turned to another of Ag’s picks-to-click, Chad Qualls, in the 6th Saturday. Devin Mesoraco took the 38 year-old right-hander deep leading off, then Scooter Gennett singled, and after Billy Hamilton lined-out Qualls walked Zach Cozart, causing Black to turn to the usual late-inning left-hander Mike Dunn, who was equally ineffective. 5 batters later Dunn finally extricated himself, but the 6 runs Colorado had scored to go ahead in the 5th were wasted, as was the 4-run lead. Next on was the curious case of Scott Oberg, who like Lyles, has supposedly “excellent” stuff, excellent to hit, apparently, that is. Oberg coughed-up another couple in his 2 innings of work, and the Reds ran away with it 12-8.
Hoffman, then, 2 days later, gets tonight’s start, and will need to be activated, along with Trevor Story, which is somewhat of a large surprise to me, in-fact jumbo. Conventional wisdom would have had Story working a couple of weeks down there in Albuquerque, recalibrating that big swing that gets those big flies, on those special occasions the 2nd-year shortstop manages to make contact. Story’s return likely means tough news for Raimel Tapia, who’s hitting .400 for the Isotopes and nothing for the Rockies, but Hoffman’s activation may mean somebody gets DFA’d, and perhaps this promotion is permanent.
The Phils are not exactly ripping up the league. They hang at 15-26, a game ahead of the Florida Marlins for second-to-last in the NL East, where the Washington Nationals (remember the Nationals?) are running away from the rest of the Division. After Hoffman goes at Eickhoff tonight Marquez gets Zach Elfin tomorrow, Chatwood faces Jeremy Hellickson Wednesday and Anderson tangles with Vince Velasquez Thursday afternoon, when there will be no TV. The St Louis Cardinals will visit for 3 on the holiday weekend (the Seattle Mariners are actually the opponent on Memorial Day), when sdcarp is threatening to lead the peloton on Sunday’s Bike to the Game day. The professor is on for that one. Go Rox!