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Saturday Morning Rockpile:

"The first time I went into the clubhouse, I don’t think my face has been that red since the first time I started talking to girls."

Christian Friedrich's "first major league homerun" was retrieved by Jeff Francis after our top draft pick hit it out in his obligatory introduction to the delights of hitting, even as a pitcher unless you're as inept at it as Ubaldo Jimenez, at Coors Field.

Depending on how badly the Diamondbacks do in Minnesota and Boston, losing a home series to the Mets might not be the nail in the coffin I thought it would be a couple of weeks ago, but it would still be pretty bad. The June trend numbers are all still pretty positive for the Rockies, we are up in the most important offensive categories and our bullpen has been lights out this month, really the big picture is looking a lot better right now than it should be given how we started.

Jessica at Take the Seven Train posted Russ' and my responses to three more questions for this series. It's interesting that we both jumbed on Eddie Kunz as a target for trading Brian Fuentes without consulting each other. He's a very solid prospect, and I'll actually backtrack a little and admit that I'd be okay in getting just Kunz + another decent prospect were we to trade Brian. Which is, of course, a proposition I still find pretty doubtful in the first place. Jessica answered three Mets questions of my own, you'll find out who Mets fans want to target both this summer and the winter to follow, as well as Jessica's reaction to the Willie Randolph et al firing a little later today.

I also did a Q and A with Joe Janish at Mets Today, wherein I expressed my dislike of Damien Easley among many other things.

Rockies in the top 10 in the MLB in VORP at their positions, minimum 100 PA's:

  • Matt Holliday LF #5
  • Clint Barmes SS #8
  • Garrett Atkins 3B #10

It's a short list. I have a feeling that Chris Iannetta (#11) would be on it were he given more playing time, and Jeff Baker (#16) has been obviously closing rapidly over the last couple of weeks. I bring this up because last night was a failure of starting pitching, certainly, but it was also a failure of the offense. Willy Taveras (#29) is simply not suited for the leadoff slot, even if he is our best option in center field right now.

People seem to be complaining more loudly about Helton's slot in the lineup when Taveras as a leadoff hitter (.284 OBP in June) is the single biggest capacitor of runs in our lineup and it's not even close. The problem that we have, however, is that there's really only one decent choice to bat leadoff that doesn't sap from the run production later in the order, and that choice goes against every managerial rubric that Clint Hurdle has ingrained deeply in his soul. You know, I'd gladly make the trade in HurdleLogic of batting pitchers before pulling them the next inning anyway if part of that quirkiness included the ability to put a sluggish, high OBP, low power first baseman at the top of the order followed by a decent avoid the DP bat like Baker's.

Another night of Torrealba, of course (#35 ot of 41) didn't help, either.