Game 15 Preview: Juan Nicasio looks to bail out the Rockies yet again

Doug Pensinger

If the Rockies want to prevent this from becoming a really bad road trip, they probably have to win this game tonight.

This is an important game for a couple of reasons.

First of all, the Rockies are facing Andrew Cashner tomorrow who has been excellent in three starts this season, posing a 1.29 ERA in 21 innings. In other words, if the Rockies lose this game tonight, there's a good chance they will lose four games in a row and fall to 1-5 on this California road trip.

Secondly, Juan Nicasio is on the hill for the Rockies and it will be interesting to see if he can get his slider working anywhere close to the way he had it on opening day. It's much less likely now that Nicasio struggled with that pitch in his second outing of the season against the Chicago White Sox, but if he does show flashes of it again, it still opens the possibility of an improved pitcher in 2014.

The best news involving the Rockies lineup to night is that Michael Cuddyer is back in there a night after leaving the game where he crashed into the right field wall unsuccessfully trying to make a catch. Unlike with Brett Anderson, it appears that the Rockies have dodged a bullet.

With a lefty on the mound for San Diego, Cuddyer will play first giving Justin Morneau the night off to start the game. In addition, Brandon Barnes will be in right with Drew Stubbs starting in center giving Charlie Blackmon the night off in an attempt to limit lefty on lefty match ups.

Today's Lineups

Brandon Barnes - RF Everth Cabrera - SS
Michael Cuddyer - 1B Alexi Amarista - CF
Carlos Gonzalez - LF Seth Smith - LF
Troy Tulowitzki - SS Jedd Gyorko - 2B
Wilin Rosario - C Chase Headley - 3B
Nolan Arenado - 3B Yonder Alonso - 1B
Drew Stubbs - CF Will Venable - RF
DJ LeMahieu - 2B Nick Hundley - C
Juan Nicasio - RHP Robbie Erlin - RHP
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