BOY HOWDY, THAT'S A LOTTA DINGERS!
Despite out-homering the Reds 5-4, the Rockies dropped their third consecutive series as they fell short in the finale in Cincinnati. They remain without a series win since beating the Dodgers on May 2nd at Coors Field to take that series 2-1.
So, how do you lose a game in which you hit that many balls over the wall? Well, a good way is to have those five longballs represent your only hits. That's exactly what the Rockies did this afternoon. Troy Tulowitzki, Carlos Gonzalez (twice), Michael Cuddyer, and Dexter Fowler all went yard, but there wasn't a single person on base for any of them. The big difference in the game is that, for Brandon Phillips' third-inning jack, there were two runners aboard. What's worse, Phillips may not have even stepped to the plate in that frame if it weren't for Jamie Moyer inexplicably plunking Reds' pitcher Mat Latos to lead off the inning.
Moyer was bad in his five innings of work, allowing seven runs on seven hits including four homers. He has now allowed 11 on the season in a little bit over 50 innings of work. Those aren't good numbers. He also saw his ERA climb to 5.70, and there has to be at least a decent chance that he has made his final start in a Rockies uniform. We shall see. The bullpen deserves some praise, as Josh Roenicke, Matt Reynolds, and Adam Ottavino combined to pitch three scoreless innings, while allowing just one hit. They gave the offense a chance to climb back into it, and while they certainly tried, it did not pay off.
After Fowler's pinch-hit homer with one out in the eighth inning, Eric Young Jr. drew a walk and Marco Scutaro reached on a fielder's choice in which the Reds had EY trapped between second and third, but were unable to get him out. Wtih Carlos Gonzalez looming, Dusty Baker called upon Aroldis Chapman, who proceeded to blow Gonzalez away with three high fastballs ranging from 94 to 98 MPH. Tulowitzki's approach was better against Chapman, as he saw eight pitches. However, he just missed the last of those, flying out harmlessly to Drew Stubbs. Jason Giambi would reach to lead off the ninth against Chapman, but Cuddyer lined out to second base and Jordan Pacheco grounded into a game-ending double play, halting his 11-game hitting streak.
It was nice to see all the long balls, and the Rockies had a few loud outs that sit firmly in the bad luck department. However, there were probably too many big swings on their part, resulting 14 ground ball outs compared to the Reds' five. CarGo's two bombs (his third such effort of the season) give him ten on the year, while Tulowitzki's total has raised to seven. Fowler's was his sixth, and Cuddyer now has five. Those five homers, combined with the Reds' four (off the bats of Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, Phillips, and Todd Frazier), set a single-game record at Great American Ballpark.
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The Rockies will play two tomorrow against the Astros, who took two of three from the Rox in the season-opening series in Houston. Juan Nicasio will take the ball in the afternoon tilt, while Alex White will be on the bump for the night cap. Be sure to check out Know Your Foe, which will be posted a couple of hours before the first game tomorrow, for more on the Astros.