Entering the top of the ninth inning, it appeared that the Rockies were going to post their Major League record-tying 11th straight road game with two or fewer runs. The team had one run (on a Ben Paulsen RBI single in the fourth) on six hits entering the frame - half of which came off the bat of Michael Cuddyer. Instead of going quietly into the night, though, the Rockies fought back with three runs in the ninth on hits by Matt McBride, Wilin Rosario, and Michael McKenry, leaving the tying run in scoring position to end the contest when Rafael Ynoa flied out to center in a 5-4 loss.
The fact that Colorado didn't go quietly into the night qualifies as good news these days for the Rockies. After all, tonight's loss was Colorado's fifth straight. It moved the team to 40 games below .500 at 59-89. With 14 games remaining, the Rockies need to go 4-10 to avoid the first 100 loss season in franchise history. Colorado's road record is now an unfathomably abysmal 20-54 (.270) this season, which is definitely on pace for a franchise worst. At this point, you have to look for silver linings wherever you can find them.
Franklin Morales had a very Franklin day today. After giving up a solo shot to Matt Holliday in the first, Franklin was up 1-2 on Pete Kozma with two outs and nobody on in the second inning. Morales walked Kozma, allowed a double to pitcher Shelby Miller, and then served up a two run homer to Matt Carpenter, turning a 1-0 deficit into a 4-0 margin just like that. In all, Morales labored through four innings, throwing 87 pitches and allowing four runs on five hits and two walks. For good measure, Morales had his NL-leading fourth balk of the year as well.
The bullpen was relatively decent, providing four innings of one run baseball. Rex Brothers was brought in to face a lefty with two out and two on, but as he so often has this season, allowed the inherited runner (from Tommy Kahnle) to score. Still, it's hard to pin this one on the pen, given that the Rockies weren't favored to win at any point in the game today. Ho hum.
Colorado will try to break their losing streak tomorrow against Fort Collins native rookie Marco Gonzalez, sending Jordan Lyles to the mound.
We Salute: Cuddyer (.117 WPA)
We Are Disappointed In: Morales (-.245 WPA), Ynoa (-.117)
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Panda Rating: Sad Panda