Going in, my expectations for this game were very, very low. About as low as they can get for a game at Coors Field. I fully expected the Rockies to struggle with Christian Friedrich on the mound, I was fully prepared to watch the pitching staff surrender about ten runs (so I guess the nine the Brewers actually scored was a bonus), and I was fully prepared to watch the Rockies lose by a large number. The pitching match up was awful. Thanks again injury bug.
However, I still walked away from this game bitterly disappointed, because nothing - No amount of alcohol, drugs, or tranquilizer darts - could possibly prepare me for the horror show I watched unfold in the top of the third inning.
With five Brewer runs already on the board, and two more runners in scoring position with two outs, the Rockies elected to intentionally walk Jean Segura so they could face the pitcher, Wily Peralta. What's the worst that could happen? Oh right, that's always the wrong question to ask with this team.
One strike away from escaping the jam, Christian Friedrich uncorked a wild pitch. One run scores.
In a pathetic attempt to try and prevent that run from scoring, catcher Michael McKenry made an off balance, foolish, and highly awkward throw in what I guess was the general direction of Friedrich covering home plate late. The ball got away, and another run scored.
Then came the signature moment from this game. The ultimate exclamation point on a quagmire which seemingly couldn't get worse and did.
McKenry stood by home plate; hands on knees, not paying attention - Apparently recovering from a back tweak on his ill advised throw which allowed the second run to score. Meanwhile, Friedrich, who recovered the ball, battled his own bout of narcolepsy and completely failed to notice Segura scurrying home right in front of him.
Ever see a baby carriage rolling towards a cliff while the only guy who can do anything about it stands there like a dope? Me neither, but I'm guessing this was the baseball version of that.
For those keeping track, that's one wild pitch, and three runs. If I saw that in little league game I'd be upset! For this to happen at the major league level is a baseball disgrace of epic proportions!
Friedrich and McKenry should buy out a page in tomorrow's Denver Post issuing a public apology to fans for that play. It's one thing to make terrible baseball plays, as physical errors are going to happen all the time in this game (we're about to get to that). However, what we saw today should never happen at this level. Heck, it should never happen at any level. I would tell them both to hang their head in shame, but then they might miss another runner sprinting towards home plate.
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Sadly, this was far from the only defensive disaster in this game.
The Josh Rutledge at third base experiment hit a major snag today as he made two errors (could have been three) which helped add serious fuel to the fire in both the four run Brewer second and four run Brewer third innings. First, he turned what should have been a ground out to start the second into a two base error, and then he bobbled a grounder when he should have had a play at the plate in the third. The snafu then caused him to rush the throw to first, which was wild and gave all the runners another base.
There was also a rough play from the usually sure handed DJ LeMahieu. On a ground ball in the second, which should have been an inning ending double play, LeMahieu made an awful throw to first which handcuffed Morneau and got away. That turned what should have been a 2-2 tie into a 3-2 Milwaukee lead, which then became a 4-2 Milwaukee lead on a Rickie Weeks RBI triple.
It was that kind of day.
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Christian Friedrich wasn't a total disaster on the mound in this one, which is to say he pitched better than many though he would. He was far from good, but the four EARNED RUNS he allowed in this game felt about right. His defense let him down and allowed that total to balloon to nine, although one of the those unearned runs are completely on him for allowing Segura to frolic home in front of him.
For everything Friedrich did wrong in this game, he did do one very big thing right. He got through six innings of work, which means the bullpen is not completely trashed in advance of tomorrow's game. That could become important, unless bad Tyler Matzek shows up. Then it probably won't matter.
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There was one piece of very good news from this contest, and that's Corey Dickerson's continued hot streak. He had three more hits today including his tenth home run of the season, an opposite field shot to left.
How good has Dickerson been? Take a look at this.
Troy Tulowitzki's season wRC+ after today's game = 190
Corey Dickerson's season wRC+ after today's game = 180
Yes his BABIP is high, yes his home run to fly ball ratio is unsustainable, but all that doesn't really matter, because Dickerson has shown the ability to do so much damage in so many different parts of the strike zone and to so many parts of the ball park that he's still going to be a well above average major league hitter when these things normalize.
You want a good thought after the clown show at Coors today? The Rockies have Troy Tulowitzki, Nolan Arenado, and Corey Dickerson all under team control through the end of the decade along with Carlos Gonzalez still under team control for another three seasons after this one. The foundation is there for a great team if the injury bug ever goes away. For now though, the struggle continues.
Games behind: 9.5
Games left: 88
Total comments: 431
Total commenters: 35
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