Yohan Flande continued the Rockies surprising string of solid starting pitching with 6.2 innings of two run ball--with eight strikeouts--but the depleted Rockies lineup couldn't muster much against Cubs pitching. Predictably, the Rockies bullpen allowed multiple runs, and required some exceptional defensive plays to keep it from ballooning into a complete debacle. Hooray. We only lost by a respectable score, not a laughable one.
Nolan Arenado made another couple of fabulous defensive plays and scored the only Rockies run with a two out single. Thank God he's back, so we don't have to watch Charlie Culberson in action anymoreEXCEPT
Josh Rutledge was a late scratch from the game. The Rockies' backup short stop--who had been performing very well in Tulo's absence--was nowhere to be seen. I just now saw from Twitter, a full four hours after the fact, that Rutledge was dealing with "an undisclosed illness." Hard to imagine what that could be, except for maybe "being a Rockie in 2014." Culberson took his spot at short.
Actually, Culberson didn't do so bad. He had a couple hard outs (of course no base hits) and a fabulous defensive play in the eighth inning that kept the game at 4-1. With runners at first and third, a hard ground ball up the middle looked destined for center field, before Culberson laid out and glove-flipped to LeMahieu, who turned the double play to end the inning. Nick Massett had already allowed two runs to effectively end the game, but at least someone made the game watchable for Rockies fans.
And watchable is basically the best we can hope for now. The Cubs leapfrogged the Rockies in the race for not-worst in the National League. Yohan Flande had an 8/1 K/BB ratio tonight. That was fun. Nolan looked good. That was fun. Cargo alternated strikeouts with lined shots that could have been doubles but weren't. Was that fun? No, I guess not. Whatever. DLR tomorrow. He's fun.