The Colorado Rockies brought their power swings to Coors Field tonight, as they opened up a series with the San Francisco Giants by popping five home runs. Jorge De La Rosa battled through five innings to get the win, which ties him with Aaron Cook for the most in franchise history at Coors Field. He got the big outs where it counted, and let the offense do its thing; tonight, its thing was hitting baseballs really freaking hard.
Charlie Blackmon man. Whew. Add two more home runs to his 2014 ledger, a solo shot to lead off the second and a solo bomb to seal the night in the eighth. He even added a walk to the mix--at this point, his walk rate is the only thing to quibble about. Blackmon's 2014 line is now a stupefying .411/.450/.671. Oh, and five stolen bases, let's not forget about those.
Charlie Blackmon is hitting .403 and Corey Dickerson is at .400. Dexter Fowler? .217— Purple Row (@PurpleRow) April 22, 2014
The Rockies got things started early and they never let up. Blackmon led off the game with a pop up to second (lol), but the next batter Nolan Arenado, on a 2-0 count, launched the first home run of the night to left field. A Troy Tulowitzki walk and Justin Morneau double later (on a fantastic 11 pitch at bat; we are all Morneau believers now), Wilin Rosario pummeled a hanging slider into the bleachers. Presto bango, the Rockies were up four to nil.
Ryan Vogelsong went a scant inning and a third, departing with runners on first and second. David Huff got Morneau to ground into a double play so that Vogelsong "only" gave up five runs in his four outs of work.
You would be hard pressed to call De La Rosa's outing good. In fact, it was a few degrees away from actively horrible. DLR was unable to keep his pitch count down, as he worked deep counts throughout his five innings of work. He loaded the bases with nobody out in the third inning, facing the Giants' best hitter in Buster Posey. He busted Posey's bat with a good cutter to induce a double play, and after striking out Michael Morse he evaded the jam.
Later, in the fifth, DLR walked Angel Pagan and allowed a ground rule double to Hunter Pence to place runners on second and third with one out. Posey and Morse again obliged, as a ground out and a strikeout ended the threat. So De La Rosa tiptoed through the landmines and got the requisite five innings to be in line for the win. At the end of the day, allowing only one run is nice, but it would have been a boon to the bullpen to go more than five innings. Regardless of his shakiness, the offense and the bullpen more than held their own.
Corey Dickerson, getting the start in center field now that Cuddyer is officially on the disabled list, reminded the Rockies why it was so difficult to send him down to AAA. Dickerson blasted a two run home run to center field in the third inning, extending the lead to seven to one. He added a single and a double in the other frames. The outfield as a whole has been insanely productive.
Carlos Gonzalez was 0-4, continuing this difficult little streak he's on. Hopefully he'll shake off whatever this little funk is.
The Bullpen was nails tonight, especially Tommy Kahnle. Citizen Kahnle worked two innings immediately after the departure of De La Rosa, and he struck out five Giants. Those two innings really sealed the deal, as you can never really put a Coors Field game in the books, no matter how big the lead. Kahnle has been a huge pick up this year.
Adam Ottavino continued his immaculate 2014 with another perfect frame. The only surprising thing was that he didn't strike anybody out. He has now worked nine innings, walked none, allowed three hits and no runs. He has struck out thirteen, with his ankle-breaking slider.
This was a good one. There's nothing better than gobsmacking the Giants on our own turf, and while the next two games will likely be much more difficult, we have 24 hours to enjoy this one. See awesome graph below.
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