The Colorado Rockies jumped out to a hot start against the Los Angeles Dodgers Thursday night, staking their pitchers to a 10-0 lead early. Given the strength of the Rockies’ pitchers so far this season, it seemed like a win was only a matter of time. Not so fast, said all the people with their Coors Field memes ready to go.
The Dodgers rallied and got to within three runs. The Rockies were forced to turn to closer Greg Holland, and with no shortage of drama late in this one, they were able to hang on to win 10-7.
Hyun-Jin Ryu started for the Dodgers, and he just never had it in this one. Mama said there’d be days like this, and all that, but when you have one of those days in the first of four games at Coors Field, you are forced to suffer a little bit longer. Ryu indeed had to wear this one, giving up 10 runs in four innings of work.
The offense rode a number of rallies to their dominant showing, stringing together hits and scoring all of those runs without socking any dingers. Ian Desmond started things off with an RBI double in the first. Nolan Arenado delivered his own RBI double in the second, followed by RBI knocks from Mark Reynolds and Carlos Gonzalez.
Pat Valaika got in on the fun with a run-scoring double of his own, and then the baseball gods apparently thought Ryu hadn’t had enough just yet and the 10th run scored on a balk.
CarGo’s showing was perhaps the most encouraging of all. Dropped to 6th in the order, the struggling veteran delivered a couple hits and drove in three runs. The more his struggles become a story, the more we look for signs that the patented CarGo hot streak is coming. So it is that we will hope tonight was the start of a breakout.
Called on to pitch due to Tyler Anderson’s late scratch, Jeff Hoffman gave the Rockies plenty to get excited about. With life on his fastball that kept the Dodgers on their heels, Hoffman cruised through the lineup twice. He tripped a bit during the third time through the order, but that might also be attributed to a change in approach as Hoffman attacked the zone with a 10-0 lead.
All told, Hoffman went 51⁄3 innings, gave up three runs and struck out eight hitters. He then gave way to the bullpen, and that’s where things would eventually get weird.
Staked to that big lead, manager Bud Black surely would have liked to use his mop-up guys and save the big guns in his bullpen for the rest of the weekend. Jordan Lyles and Scott Oberg refused to make things so easy.
Lyles did give the team some length, eating up 21⁄3 innings and wiggling out of some trouble early in his outing. He eventually cracked in the 8th inning, though, giving up two runs on a Yasmani Grandal double.
If Lyles made things interesting, Oberg made them downright scary in the 9th. He gave up three straight hits, making the score 10-6 and putting the tying run in the on-deck circle with two guys on.
It was Holland who saved the day once again. He induced a huge double play from Chase Utley, who represented the tying run, and with the score 10-7 and a runner on, Holland struck out Yasiel Puig to put this win on the books. Holland is now a perfect 15 for 15 in save opportunities this season.
The Rockies would have preferred a blowout, of course, but a win is a win. Tyler Chatwood will be on the hill for tomorrow’s game against Clayton Kershaw, who you better believe will walk from the bullpen to the dugout in a punctual manner so that the game starts at 6:40 p.m. on the dot.