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Saturday Rockpile: Hammel looks to regain form, Hirsh demoted to bullpen, Smith (hopefully) a mainstay in the lineup

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Hammel ready to bounce back on hill | ColoradoRockies.com: News
Jason Hammel is back on the road tonight, meaning we can likely expect a good start from him. He had trouble getting people out on the homestand before the All-Star break, and really has had trouble at Coors all year long. I'm predicting that a healthy mix of Petco Park and a stinky Padres offense will be just the right cure for Jason's recent woes.

Inside the Colorado Rockies " Hirsh Now Relieving for Sky Sox | News and commentary about the Colorado Rockies major league baseball team
Jack Etkin goes into more detail about Jason Hirsh's move to the Sky Sox bullpen that was brought up in a Pebble Report from a couple of days ago. So far, success has not come with the change. He's only hitting 88 with his fastball and his slider has been poor. The article also mentions that Greg Reynolds extended himself to throwing 100 feet. He still isn't close to a rehab assignment.

Smith earns start in left with offense - The Denver Post
It looks like Jim Tracy has finally seen the light, and is able to see what the rest of us have been seeing throughout the entirety of the season. Seth Smith started his fourth consecutive game last night. His 1-for-4 performance (with seven runners left on base) was definitely more of the exception than the norm, so hopefully Tracy doesn't see that as some kind of opportunity to put Carlos Gonzalez back into the starting lineup on a permanent basis.

Buster Olney rank the NL's easiest roads to the postseason - ESPN
Buster Olney ranks the Rockies as having the fifth easiest route to the playoffs. He mentions the tough stretch they have in late-August where they will play ten straight games against the Dodgers and Giants.

Baseball Prospectus fixes the Los Angeles Dodgers, Colorado Rockies, San Francisco Giants, Arizona Diamondbacks and San Diego Padres - ESPN
This was posted a couple of days ago at ESPN.com. According to Jay Jaffe, the Rockies need to make a pitch at a big reliever, in addition to acquiring depth for the bullpen. The club already fulfilled his depth wish by adding Matt Herges a couple of days ago. Now, will the Rox make a run at a guy like Chad Qualls? Do they need to? Your thoughts...

Slow day for news, overall. As the late, great Walter Cronkite would say, "And that's the way it is..."