Cuddyer completely broke open the game in the sixth when he crushed a 2-2 pitch from Eury De La Rosa over the left field wall to put Colorado ahead, 11-2. Two innings later, the 35-year-old veteran cleared the bases again, this time with a line-drive double into the left-center field gap to turn a blowout into an utter laugher.
Rosario had another big game as well, notching three hits and a pair of RBI a night after going 4-for-5 with a double and a walk-off home run. Rosario lifted his average to .270, which is 21 points higher than where it sat at the beginning of a 10-game stretch during which the 25-year-old backstop has collected 16 hits.
Colorado has tough decisions to make this offseason on Cuddyer and Rosario. The former will be a free agent who could receive a larger offer from another team than what the Rockies would be able to pay. The chances of that happening aren't great, but this wouldn't be the first time a team took a gamble on an injury-prone player with big production potential. Entering tonight, Cuddyer owned a .327/.371/.562 line. Much like Troy Tulowitzki, Cuddyer's production isn't the problem; it's his inability to stay on the field that has hurt the Rockies and should make them think long and hard about how much they're willing to offer him to stick around.
Meanwhile, Rosario has given the team fits for a couple of years with his inconsistent at best, historically awful at worst defense behind the plate. That problem was compounded by his lack of offensive production this year. The Rockies at least had the foresight to make competitive offers to Carlos Ruiz and Brian McCann in free agency before this season, but with only one real decent free agent option on the market this time around, they're going to have to play it smart.
For what it's worth, Rockies owner Dick Monfort believes Rosario "can be a dynamic catcher," according to an email he sent to a fan (yes, he's still doing that -- hat-tip to Nick Stephens). However, Monfort in that same email hinted that there are others in the organization who don't feel that way, in which case the team is prepared to look towards free agency to solve the problem. Monfort also added that Michael McKenry "is a maybe at this point." That doesn't exactly sound like a resounding vote of confidence for the Rockies' wildly successful backup catcher.
At any rate, all of that stuff can, and should, be worried about at a later time. For now, let's revel in the fact that the Rockies put up a bunch of crooked numbers once again, and that Jordan Lyles didn't walk anybody while allowing only two runs in six innings. Also, how about Rafael Ynoa? The rookie utility infielder notched four hits, including a pair of doubles, and nearly hit an inside-the-park home run, instead being thrown out at the plate on a somewhat questionable call.
Plus, there's this other nugget (sorry for maybe burying the lede): the Rockies have been mathematically eliminated from the possibility of losing 100 games. Some people will be oddly sad about that, but I believe it's nice that, in lieu of actual success, we can still say that our team has yet to reach the century mark in defeats in a single season.
Go ahead and keep winning, I say.
Graph, roll call
|Roll Call Info|
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