Balls were clearing the fence left and right today, but luckily most of them came off of Rockies bats. Charlie Blackmon, Troy Tulowitzki, Wilin Rosario, and Drew Stubbs all went yard in the Rockies 6-3 victory over the Padres. It was the first time the Rockies won back to back games since mid June, and their first series victory since the same time. But putting negativity aside, it was just a solid ball game.
Blackmon led off the game with a tater to right field. Two batters later, Tulo cranked one out, his first dinger in almost a month (it's not like he was bad during that time frame, but it was nice to see the home run derby captain actually hit a home run). Two innings later Rosario sat back on a hanging curve ball from Eric Stults and blasted it into the stands.
But those were all solo shots, and the Padres weren't laying down and dying. Jair Jurrjens started for the Rockies, and there's no denying he's basically just a warm body until the myriad hurt starters return. Jurrjens only went 4 2/3 innings and allowed eight hits and three runs. The Padres lifted two dingers of their own, from Former Rockie Great Seth Smith and some dude named Goebbert. The Pads were outhitting the Rockies for a while there, and when Rex Brothers walked the leadoff hitter in the seventh inning, it started looking real dicey for the men in purple.
But Brothers got out of the jam by inducing a couple clutch K's, and the Rockies busted out in the ninth inning, against relieving stud Joaquin Benoit. Benoit had a 1.23 ERA coming into the game and better than 10 K/9, but that didn't stop the Rockies. Chuck Nazty led the inning off with a single and then came around on Drew Stubbs' big home run.
How great an acquisition has Stubbs been? He has a 114 wRC+ on the season while playing a great center field. The idea was to mostly play him against lefties, but with the outfield attrition, he has seen lots of time against righties. The strikeouts are still there, but he's running into enough pitches to still be very useful. He's on pace to eclipse three WAR, despite not having a starter's share of at bats. And all he cost us was one Josh Outman? That's a pretty good deal.
Tulo followed him up with his second homer of the day, an insurance run that wasn't really needed but very much appreciated.
LaTroy Hawkins shut the door nicely, despite a lead off walk. Another nice acquisition there, as he earned his 17th save.
The discontent in Rockie land won't go away just because of one series victory against a lousy Padres team, but it sure feels better than the parade of putrescence we have seen the last month. It's good to see home runs. It's good to see strong relief pitching. It's good to see wins. And right now, that's all I care about.
<iframe src="http://www.fangraphs.com/graphframe.aspx?config=0&static=0&type=livewins&num=0&h=450&w=450&date=2014-07-09&team=Rockies&dh=0" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" height="450" width = "450" style="border:1px solid black;"></iframe><br /><span style="font-size:9pt;">Source: <a href="http://www.fangraphs.com/livewins.aspx?date=2014-07-09&team=Rockies&dh=0&season=2014">FanGraphs</a></span>