Brewers 6, Rockies 5: Gonzalez continues good start, De La Rosa shaky

Thearon W. Henderson

It was a slightly less informative game compared to the last two, as most of the players of relevance in the game either have spots locked up or are extreme long-shots to make the team, but there is still plenty to talk about. When it comes to the Rockies first true "home" game of the Spring, for the second straight day the Rockies lost in a close fashion. Both teams got their offenses going early, but while both squads had difficulty plating runners late in the game, the Brewers did just a bit better of a job. But it's still early Spring... who cares about the result? Let's talk about what we saw from the players.

Carlos Gonzalez' second game on the field was an excellent followup to his productive day on Friday. The Rockies left fielder had two more hits (including a double), batted in a run and scored one himself. Among other starters, Drew Stubbs and Wilin Rosario each had singles, and while Michael Cuddyer and Troy Tulowitzki remain hitless after today, each player worked a walk off of Brewers starter Matt Garza in the first inning. Four of the Rockies five runs were secured in the first inning against Garza, which also contained productive hits from Brandon Barnes and Michael McKenry, the game's designated hitter, who knocked in two runs with a double.

But struggling almost as much as Garza was his Rockies opponent. Jorge De La Rosa showed a fair but of shakiness in his first Spring outing. Certainly nothing to panic over, as players who are secured of a spot on the team are less dependent on good showings early in Spring, but it certainly wasn't very fun. After allowing a leadoff home run to Rickie Weeks to start the game, De La Rosa settled in and escaped the inning. The second inning brought more trouble, however, as the lefty allowed two walks and three more hits, as well as an error on a pickoff attempt. He was unable to finish the inning, with Tommy Kahnle securing the final out.

Things quieted down from there. Chad Bettis and Kraig Sitton threw fairly clean innings, each allowing a hit, while Raul Fernandez allowed just one walk in his frame. Rex Brothers allowed both a hit and a walk in his inning, but escaped without harm. Manny Corpas was interestingly allowed two innings. Though Corpas allowed a home run to Khris Davis in his first, as well as three more hits behind it, he was bailed out by an outfield assist from Barnes, who has kept his name in the mix thus far with small but noticeable productive moves. Corpas' second inning went much more smoothly, but the Rockies lost their lead in Scott Oberg's eighth inning, when former Rockie Hector Gomez took him deep.

Defensively, in addition to Barnes' assist, Stubbs and Tulowitzki both showed good moves on the field. Ben Paulsen was solid at first base for the second half of the game, as as was Matt McBride who played right field for some of the day and made a good play on a deep fly ball in the eighth. McBride was also productive at the plate, hitting a triple in the sixth, but he was tagged out trying to steal home on a botched squeeze play. Charlie Culberson, on the other hand, took some significant steps back from looking appealing for a utility infield spot, making two errors at third base. Culberson was also hitless in two at bats. Outfielder Tim Wheeler doubled in his only at bat, which came at the start of the Rockies ninth, but he was unable to be brought around to score.

Tomorrow the Rockies will play their first double header of the Cactus League season. They will face the Mariners at their facility in the afternoon (1:05 PM MTN), while in the nightcap (7:10 PM MTN) the Rockies will square off against Arizona for the second time, once again as the away team in their home stadium. Brett Anderson makes his Rockies debut in the Seattle game, which will have an online audio stream available for anyone with MLB's gameday audio package. The Arizona game, started by Christian Friedrich, will air on KOA.

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