2012 was awful for the Rockies as a whole, but since we've reached its end, we'll look back at twelve of the best moments of the year and hope the list is much grander twelve months from now.
...Without any delay, here are twelve of your best Colorado Rockies moments of 2012 in chronological order.
After just one game in 2012, it was Okay to be a little optimistic about the Colorado Rockies (SUCKERS!!!). Jeremy Guthrie got the win going seven strong innings, Tulo hit a ball onto the railroad tracks, and the Rockies got to watch their opponent make four errors while they were clean with the gloves. Unfortunately, this game was absolutely zero sign of what was to come the rest of the season.
It's the bottom of the 9th, it's cold and rainy, and the Rockies are down 7-6 and have only out out left to work with - But they have the right man at the plate on this night. Todd Helton dug into the box and lifted a 1-1 pitch HIGH in the air down the right field line, somehow (after what seemed like forever) the ball came down just inside the foul pole, and just over the wall for a two run blast. Helton did it again - Walk off Home Run!!! - Rockies win 8-7!
Despite being a prime example of why Rockies pitching was so poor in 2012, Jamie Moyer did provide one pretty heartwarming moment last April who he tossed seven innings without allowing an earned run and became the oldest pitcher in baseball history to win a game. No small feat there.
Helton didn't hit the only early season walk off bomb for the Rockies. Jason Giambi joined the club with a three run shot to end this game that gave the Rockies a series win against the first place team, brought them back to .500, and kept the team within 4.5 games of a division lead. It was the last moment anyone could have truly believed that the Rockies might be competitive in 2012 as they would drop nine of their next ten games and never come close to seeing .500 again.
That one win in their next ten games was a pretty good one for the Rockies though as one of the first possible bright signs for the future emerged. Christian Friedrich made his major league debut going six very strong innings while striking out seven. In fact, Friedrich would follow this performance up with another very strong outing against the Giants five days later before getting clobbered once he got to Coors Field. There's still a long way to go before Friedrich can be labeled as a productive MLB starter, but for one day in May, he gave Rockies fans everywhere a good reason to be optimistic.
A comeback win, an extra innings win, and two blowout victories made for a fun week at Coors at the end of a truly disastrous month. It was made even better by Carlos Gonzalez hitting home runs in four consecutive plate appearances during the series. Unfortunately, this moment also marked the last time we would see Troy Tulowitzki on the field in 2012 for the Rockies - And oh would he be missed.
In what may have been the poster example of a summer game at Coors Field in 2012 (expect for the Rockies winning part), the Rockies and Nationals combined to score 19 runs in the first five innings in 93 degree heat. Bryce Harper would him a home run in the 9th to tie the game and send it to extras, but Marco Scutaro would privide the game winning RBI hit in the 11th.
This game was all about Josh Rutledge. He made his major league debut and had himself a night going 2-2 with a walk and a Sac Fly. His first ever hit was an RBI double that gave the Rockies the lead and he immediately showed why he had been the spark plug of the Tulsa Drillers team during the first half of the season. In a summer where the wasn't much to get excited about, Rutledge proved to be the exception.
Tyler Colvin got RED HOT for a time last summer, and this game is one where he did the most damage. He came to the plate in the bottom of the 9th with the Rockies down 6-5 but laced a double into the right field corner that scored Wilin Rosario and Eric young Jr. to give the Rockies not only the win, but the sweep of the Brewers.
There were so many good things about this series. First and foremost, Jhoulys Chacin came back and he looked like his old self, going six strong innings without walking a batter. That alone gave the Rockies a reason to hope going forward but the Rockies were also playing decent at this point in the season. When the Met series ended, the Rockies were suddenly 12-5 in their last 17 games and looking like they might finish the season strong (False alarm everyone). On top of all this though, the sweep sparked one incredible tirade from New York radio host Mike Francesa.
This moment was not about this game. It was about a season's accomplishment for Wilin Rosario. On this night, he broke Todd Helton's Rockies rookie record for most home runs in a season for the franchise and continued to show that he may have legitimate 40 home run pop going forward. I know I for one can't wait to see Cargo, Tulo and Rosario in a lineup together on a consistent basis.
For those who followed it (many did not), this game was very important. That "it" was whether or not the Rockies would lose 100 games in 2012. This game marked win #63 for the Rockies and ensured that they would remain the only N.L. franchise to never lose 100 games for at least another year. It was also a pretty interesting game in it's own right, a game in which the Rockies would score four runs in the top of the 13th and have to hang on while surrendering two in the bottom of the 13th.
Despite these few pleasant memories, I'm really just trying to put lipstick on a pig as were prepare to eulogize 2012 as whole. In the macro, the 2012 baseball season was a cold hearted miserable piece of trash that I hope dies a painful death tonight. I won't be attending the funeral, but I'll probably be back in a week to vandalize its gravestone in hopes that nobody will ever remember it existed.
/Cheers to better 2013 for the Rockies everyone!