Rox Continue to Get Big in NL Rearview Mirrors

Is it time to put on the Purple Virtual Reality glasses and watch the Rockies baseball?  In the second inning, it looked like Chatty was going to be the next Tyler Matzek and restart the “Annual Slide Into Oblivion.”  After giving up the first HR of the season pitching away from Coors to the Rocky Killer (James Loney), he gave up a single with two outs and walked the eight-hole hitter and the opposing pitcher to load up the bases.  He promptly started off with a 3-0 count to Curtis Granderson.  Then the baseball gods sent an angel to give Chatty the greatest gift in a time of greatest need.  Granderson popped up on a 3-1 count to end the inning.

Chatty with multiple bounces in his step went into the beast mode giving up only two more base runners after that near-fatal second inning.  One runner was erased on a double play grounder.  With a 3-1 lead going into the eighth inning, Walt Weiss decided to hand the ball to Jake “always trying to go backwards instead of almost all the way back” McGee to face the two left-handed batters including one pinch hitter cold off the bench.  Not surprisingly, both of them got on with base hits.  Only difference from the previous night was that he was pulled after two batters instead of three in favor of Gopherg.  One-two-three pitches AND  one-two-three outs.  Gopherg did an awesome job for the second night in a row playing the role of following the horse (McGee) in a parade and cleaning up his horseshit spotless.  He no doubt will be promoted to higher leverage late game pitcher when Zero, Wild Thing, and Boone Logan are unavailable.

CarGo drove the final nail into the Mets’ coffin with a three-run 450-foot blast into the second deck after NoDo was IBB to so that Bastard(o) can play the LOOGY (actually loony) role.

The victory came after the Rockies rallied to beat closer Jeurys Familia who blew his second consecutive save after 52 straight saves.  The rubber game in Baltimore was impressive as well since they won the series against the team who owns the best home record in baseball.

With a 6-1 victory over the Mets, Colorado has awaken a lot of fans from their annual summer hibernation.  They improved to 51-52 overall after winning eight of the last nine games.  They are five games out of the WC chase with Pittsburgh, NYM, Miami, St. Louis, and Los Angeles (soon to be replaced by San Francisco).  They are 11-4 since the ASB.  Further breakdowns:  8-8 interleague against the powerful AL East teams with four more against Texas (crapped against TB at home); 25-24 at home (should do much better than that) and 26-28 on road (really good); 14-16 vs LHP (we are historically bad vs LHP); 22-25 vs NL West (most losses against SD, clean that up); 14-6 against NL East with 0 games vs. Nats yet); 7-13 vs. NL Central (crapped against Reds/Phillies); 8-13 in one-run games (crappy bullpen when using the wrong pieces).  It is the latest in the season since 2010 that the Rockies has been as good as one game under .500.  We should read Dr. C’s Musings now.  He just added three features the last few days.  One of them talked about learning how to win consistently; see all the games in parenthesis that should have been for the taking.  Dr. C nailed that on the head.

Weiss after the game was quoted, “We want to be playing after the regular season is over — that’s how we’re thinking this year.”  Give him credit for sticking with the team through thick and thin and the team still wanting to play for him.  His bullpen management skill is madly driving us crazy.  The rotation, which now consists of Jon Gray, Tyler Anderson, JDLR, Chatty, and Chettis, have helped make even a Little League manager manage the bullpen the proper way.  Just stay away from McGee in high-leverage situations.  Jordan Lyles and Chris Rusin have settled into their long relief roles.  Lyles gave us a hint that he might be able to be a one-inning guy later in the game as in the seventh.

Colorado’s recent surge can be credited with the farm supplying the needed pieces.  Give Zach Wilson, the Rockies’ director of player development, a big round of applause.  Quoted from the DP today, “Wilson thinks an adjustment in the development program four years ago could be a factor too.  A development supervisor was added to the staffs of five of the Rockies’ six minor-league clubs…..The improved lines of communication have resulted in what appears to be a more aggressive approach to development.”  He’s been talking about Matt Carisiti’s development.  It’s time we keep an eye on him.

The rookies have contributed mightily this year and this is just the first wave.  Tony Wolters (not Rockies developed but still scouts spotted him), Trevor Story, and Jon Gray (DL to start the year) started the year and plugged in the holes that were thought to be the black holes his year.  Then came Anderson who went through three levels (AA-AAA-MLB) this year in a short time but it was said by several insiders that he “pitched 200 innings last year” even though he hardly pitched.  He’s been watching every pitch and making notes.  A few times after Anderson was pulled from the game this year, he was seen writing notes in his book while observing the game as well as about himself.  Anderson is fifth best in baseball for highest percentage of soft-hit balls.  That means hitters are having difficulty squaring up despite his average FB velocity.  Gray is having a coming out party as the ace that can go head to head against the Kershaws and the MadBums.  David Dahl is a recent addition to the club at the expense of the energetic Brandon Barnes.  He currently has a five-game hit streak going after five games including a HR to dead center field.

There are a few more knocking on the door ready to come up.  Jeff Hoffman is the best known guy ready to come but he is not needed once the five man rotation got settled down and gave the Rockies quality start after quality start.  There’s Jordan Patterson but he’s passed by Dahl and blocked by Gerardo Parra.  Miguel Castro and Matt Carisiti are possibilities for the back end of the bullpen if needed.  But Gopherg is holding up so far.

Tonight the Rockies take on the ageless Bartolo Colon working on three-days rest.  JDLR will oppose Colon in the Rockies’ attempt to get back to .500 ball.  The game will be played at 5:10 MT if it starts on time after Mike Piazza’s number retirement ceremony.

 

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sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
4 years ago

RMH – nice write up. To me, there are three potential impact call-ups. Carasiti – I love that guy and agree with you. Tom Murphy. And my 3rd is actually German Marquez. I will say this…..Ag’s thought of bringing Freeland up in a Relief role is also intriguing. It’s funny to me that the Pirates (52-49) traded away their Closer……while the Rox may be buyers. Just shows how desparate the Rox are for some success. And…..didn’t the Nats learn anything… Read more »

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
4 years ago

Quick reading of the tea leaves:

LuCroy’s most likely destination is Cleveland.
Jay Bruce’s most likely destination is NYM

This means the Rangers, Dodgers, and to some extent the Nats (they didn’t give up that much to get Melancon) remain in play as big buyers (in theory).

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
4 years ago

I’m watching this game (hoping Story’s injury is minor) and I’m noticing JDLR doesn’t have that goofy pause at the top of his leg kick. Those windup “hitches” are deceptive, but make it really hard to “fix” a pitcher when they get out of whack, Someone has done a nice job of simplifying JDLR’s delivery.

The windup hesitation is the only thing I worry about with Tyler Anderson. Right now it’s working – really well!

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
4 years ago

Gotcha! I watch maybe 50%. Honestly……tend to boycott JDLR because his games are so slow.

Agbayani
Agbayani
4 years ago

We’re average! That’s what Charlie just said. And it’s the last day of July tomorrow!! This isn’t snark even though it sounds like it. This is a fantastic development. Meaningful games in August! (Maybe not September yet, but it’s progress) And it isn’t a fluke. I checked some stats: – As Spilly mentioned, we’ve got a positive run differential. Run differential and pythagorean record tends to be more reliable than straight won/loss record – NL rankings coming into this game:… Read more »

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
4 years ago

Booooooo…. (been out of touch this weekend), I see the Yankees get Clint Frazier. We was my favorite Prospect likely to get moved this deadline cycle. He’ll be a star.

EdtheUmp
EdtheUmp
4 years ago

All righty, boys and girls. As my father said while getting ready to head for the hog barn, “it’s nut cuttin’ time. August presents us with the following facts: 28 games…17 home, 11 on the road. 22 games currently against teams with better records than the Rox. What will September 1 bring to Rox Nation? I suspect that ALL readers on this site never, in our wildest dreams, thought we could enter August only 1 game under .500. Especially after… Read more »

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
4 years ago
Reply to  EdtheUmp

Ed – I agree, it will be interesting. Sort of cool to be starting a big, meaningful, home series against the Dodgers with our Ace (and not far from a true Ace!) on the mound. We haven’t been able to say that since the Ubaldo glory days.

Pooter
Pooter
4 years ago

I read an article today that mentioned the Rockies might be last minute buyers at the deadline. I then started thinking, what position should they upgrade? The only thing that came to mind is Head Coach. Maybe a deadline deal for Joe Girardi? Ha Ha! Bullpen– I think this position is strong with the emergence of Oberg and the return of Ottavino. Also, when Motte returns this will be a very formidable group. Just needs to be used correctly by… Read more »

NOCOgary
NOCOgary
4 years ago

Wow.pythagorean and harbinger all in the same thread! This is a better baseball team but quite a hole to overcome.I’ve enjoyed watching games a lot more this year[TV}. Would be fun to at least have a chance to be relevant in Sept.

Bill
Bill
4 years ago

When was the last time the Rockies were this close to .500 on August 1? I guess I could google it but I’m guessing it was 2010> Is that right? Missed yesterday’s game as I was visiting a non-baseball fan. He’s my kid brother who I see a few times a year so I gave it up for him.

roxnsox
roxnsox
4 years ago
Reply to  Bill

I’m not allowed to watch when the grown daughters visit. LOL

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
4 years ago

Some random trade deadline thoughts (remember, they’re worth what you paid for them): 1. The freakin Yankees made out like bandits. Clint Frazier will be a star. Gleyber Torres could be a star. Those 2 pieces alone are great. But there some other parts as well. 2. I’m really surprised the Giants gave up Phil Bickford in a trade. That’s the guy I wanted with our 2nd pick in the 1st round in the 2015 Amatuer Draft. The Giants snagged… Read more »

roxnsox
roxnsox
4 years ago
Reply to  sdcarp

Freakin Yankees. Rockies management: a general comment for you. Even the YANKEES are not afraid to be aggressive and “admit” the plan (rebuild, retool). I trust Bridich pretty much, for what that’s worth (what you paid for it), so there must not have been any decent return for anybody. He is clearly willing to trade ANYBODY after Tulo. But in general, the old Blake Street refrain is echoing for me when I see the above. (“We’re close to contending soon!”… Read more »

sdcarp
Admin
sdcarp
4 years ago
Reply to  roxnsox

I think there must have been essentially zero offers for Hundley. That’s the only logical explanation for that one.

It’s interesting – no one claimed Brandon Barnes and he’s reported to ABQ. I’d like to have $1 for every time I’ve heard or read someone say “trade Brandon Barnes.” Now we know for fact what some of us suspected all along – he (essentially) has no value. I think Hundley falls into the same category.

Bill
Bill
4 years ago

Rockies do nothing which is par for the course. But Story goes on DL and they call up Ynoa. Adames and Ynoa. Are they our SS’s for 15 (or more days). If so we should have been sellers. Or went out a got a shortstop which I admit is not easier. Don’t think they can contend this way. Perhaps they move Arenado to Short and Decalso to 3B. Baltimore did that with Machado when JJ Hardy got hurt. They lose… Read more »

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