Dbacks 4 Rox 3
In the end it all came down to last night. On a road trip that has been bumpy, with chances to win on Saturday in San Fran and Thursday in Arizona (before Nolan’s error opened the floodgates), it was last night that probably ended the Rockies slim chances to at least be interesting til September 1. With last night’s 4-3 walk-off loss in Arizona the roadtrip officially becomes a best case scenario of 4-6, but really, probably 3-7. They needed a 5-5 trip probably to still be in striking distance of the 2nd WC. It was always going to be a long-shot always, but with “theoretical” reinforcements coming (Grey, Parker, Brothers), there was enough of a possibility to keep the Rockies management from going whole-hog on the dismantling of the current team. Now…it is no one’s interest to keep this current group together. Alas, the current scenario is not really all that exciting.
Kyle Kendrick – suddenly a fly-ball machine
Justin Mornuea – still fighting concussion issues
Drew Stubbs – well, you know
CarGo – hitting under .250
LaTroy Hawkins – not exactly close to being a top flight reliever
Boone Logan – enough said.
Now, if the team thinks 2016 is also a loss (and there is no reason to totally write it off now, knowing that players continue to develop), then we might also see:
Jorge De La Rosa – a veteran pitcher who because of his ability to pitch at Coors and relationship with the Rox is almost impossible to replace…and still seems to have mileage left.
Tulo – with no real replacement yet secured – Trevor Story has only just been moved to AAA, Cristhian Adames is not thought highly enough to be up here already, and recent #1 pick Brendan Rogers is closer to be able to drink than Coors Field. If the Rox were offered a pair of top 20 pitching starting prospects…well then, they do it but it is a sure sign 2016 is also gone. A tough sell to fans when it also means wasting Nolan Arenado’s best years.
Charlie Blackmon – Top 25 prospect David Dahl is heading to Short Season A ball to rehab before returning to AA after his spleen removal (normal human beings go home and just write it off til next year – great kid, future star), but he could well be here in 2016 with a great camp.
DJ – Story can also play 2B, and if the team feels like they need to keep Tulo DJ probably is at the height of his value in terms of trades. It may also open a spot for Adames, since it’s a defense first position with the team.
Christian Friedrich – still with lots of time under team control and as I wrote earlier his #s vs RHB look worse because of BABIP. The team sees a lot of potential with the young man.
Jon Axford – He may have the most value of arm on the team but if the team thinks it has a chance in 2016 they need a proven closer.
So let the bidding begin. Because after a great start last night with 3 runs in the first – a homer by Blackmon, walks to DJ and Tulo, a K by Arenado (who is suddently really struggling), a K of CarGo, Rosario doubled in DJ and Tulo. From there on? 2 hits over 9 1/3 innings. They would have been better just throwing the whole AAA team up here I fear.
Kyle Kendrick gave up 2 in the first, showing once again the struggle this team has of following up runs with shut-down innings. In this case he gave up a double to Goldy – a Rockie and NL killer (not sure of his number interleague but I think he is the best player in the NL right now) and Rockie kill Jake Lamb’s triple to drive in Goldy.
It remained 3-2 until the 6th when light hitting shortstop Cliff Pennington singled to right to score Lamb and create a 3rd and 1st situation with 2-outs. All Kendrick needed to do was get out a guy hitting .228. Couldn’t do it. Story of the year right there. The Rox have been close in so many games and could not execute when needed. That is the season in a nutshell.
Relief pitching did well, with Miller getting the team out of that 3rd and 1st situation (after walking the bases full). Then an innings from Kahnle (2K) and Friedrich (1H and 1BB so not clean, but a K and 3 outs) and Oberg (1H 2BB 1K). But Yohan Flande came in for the 10th , gave up 2H, and allowed that man Pennington to get his sac-fly to score the winning run.
Dbacks 4 Rox 3