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Thursday Rockpile: Street closing again, traffic delays expected

Some interesting splits thus far:

Among NL teams, only Philadelphia and Los Angeles have a better OPS from their left fielders, the Rockies have the top OPS in right field thus far, but rank only 11th out of 16 in center. Despite the struggles of Chris Iannetta and Troy Tulowitzki, the Rockies rank higher in catcher (#7) and shortstop (#2) OPS than they do at any other infield position (1B #12, 2B #15, 3B #10).

The Rockies starters and relievers have nearly identical ERA's, 5.52 and 5.50 respectively, but they're taking different roads to get there. The relievers are tied with the Dodgers for issuing the league's fewest walks (24), but too many fat pitches has left them with the NL's highest batting average against (.315). The starters, conversely have a middle of the road BAA (.286 is solid for Coors) but lead the league in free passes allowed (56).

Huston Street will likely return to the closer's role. The one thing that Hurdle's constant tinkering here and in other places does tell us is that he's feeling an acute pressure to win now. While all the tinkering's annoying, that under the gun mentality may prove to be a good thing.

Todd Helton's first Coors HR in ages was a welcome sign, and Matt Murton's life just keeps getting better according to Patrick Saunders' notes column.

Jack Etkin writes about the importance of Aaron Cook's return yesterday. Troy Renck counts Cook as one of four players that the Rockies are relying on this season who finally are showing signs of stepping up.

May has been a bugaboo for the Rockies over the last few seasons, in 2008 they stumbled to a 9-19 record in the month, in 2007 they finished the month with a 15-13 record but required a seven game win streak late to pull it out. The Rocktober team was at its low water mark, nine games under .500 on May 21st. In 2006, the Rockies had one of their lowest scoring months ever, scoring only 85 runs en route to a 12-16 record. In 2005, they went 9-20. With the schedule lightening up, I don't think they can afford the same sort malaise this season.