I'm not a fan of boxing, but Colorado's 7-1 loss to the Nationals did make me appreciate one thing about that sport. In boxing, when one guy knocks the other guy out in the first round, the match is over. Tonight, when the Nationals put three one the board against the Rockies in the first inning, Washington got to drag the body around for three hours.
Normally, a 3-0 lead in the first inning isn't insurmountable, but with a pitching match up of Christian Friedrich vs. Stephen Strasburg and Troy Tulowitzki getting a day of rest after playing in 15 straight games, it sure felt like the largest 3-0 first inning lead of all time.
This game also felt like something else entirely though. It was as if it wasn't even a real major league baseball match up. One side so outclassed the other, it resembled what would happen if a Triple-A team faced off against a good MLB team getting healthy and hot heading into the summer grind. Don't be fooled by the score. This game was less winnable than contests I've seen the Rockies lose by double digits.
The entire evening felt like some sick joke. Troy Tulowitzki, Carlos Gonzalez, Nolan Arenado, and Michael Cuddyer all did not appear in this game, but Christian Friedrich started it. Think about where this team was two months ago, and then think about the chain of events that needed to occur to allow this to happen; even if it was for only one game.
Friedrich ended the night with an unsurprising awful line of 3.1 innings pitched, five runs allowed, more walks (4) than strikeouts (3), and raised his ERA on the season to a dreadful 9.45. When he starts, I feel as though the Rockies have almost no chance to win.
That's especially true however when they run into a guy like Stephen Strasburg, who now has a 2.15 ERA over his last 14 starts against NL West teams. For seven innings, he held a depleted Rockies' lineup (which saw Drew Stubbs and his .611 road OPS batting cleanup) scoreless. He finally cracked in the eighth when DJ LeMahieu hit his third home run of the season with one out in the inning.
The rest of the positives were very few and far between. Wilin Rosario had a pair of hits as well as a nice opposite field approach, and Matt Belisle and Rex Brother each got all the batters they faced out, but that's just lipstick on a pig. This game was an abomination!
The Nationals had 15 at bats with runners in scoring position, the Rockies had two. Nationals' pitching struck out three times as many guys as they walked, Rockies' pitching walked more than they struck out. The Nationals are now a season high seven games north of .500, the Rockies are now a season high 12 games south of .500. This was a clash of two teams on opposite ends of the baseball solar system.
With the loss, the Rockies are now 8-24 in their last 32 games. The 1993 expansion Rockies and the 2001 mid season collapse Rockies each had a 7-25 stretch over a 32 game period, but other than that, no other Colorado team in franchise history has been as bad for 32 games as this one.
Also with the loss, the Rockies fall into fourth place, just one and a half games ahead of the Arizona Diamondbacks who own the worst record in all of baseball.
I would say it can't get any worse, but in baseball, it can always get worse. Important players will be coming back soon, but the way this team has played recently, it will just be decorations on a grave.
Games behind: 11.5
Games left: 78
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