The Rockies melted down in spectacular fashion on Sunday afternoon. Calling the game “winnable” is an nderstatement. Despite a 12-9 lead heading into the ninth inning, the Rockies only faced one deficit during the whole game. That came after the Rangers tagged Jon Gray for five runs in the fifth inning. It felt like a back-and-forth game, but the Rockies had the lead for almost all of it.
It was lost for good when Wade Davis came in for the ninth inning and pitched one of the worst innings you’ll ever see. Two walks and a single loaded the bases, and Davis proceeded to walk in two runs after that. A two-run single finished off the Rockies.
There are bad losses, and there are embarrassing losses. This one was embarrassing.
“Gray Day” used to just be “the day Jon Gray pitches” in which some amazing stuff might happen. This season, however, it’s become a ritual battle of Gray as a pitcher and what in the world to make of his 2018 season. Today was most definitely Gray Day.
Gray cruised through five innings, during which he allowed one run on three hits and no walks while striking out nine. He even struck out six batters in a row. The wheels fell off in the sixth inning though, and there were enough factors outside of his pitching that unhelpfully qualify how the start ended up. A walk, two singles, and two errors set up Jurickson Profar to hit a three-run home run. It capped off a five-run inning that saw a 5-1 lead turn into a 6-5 deficit.
A Gray Day is a game that makes you fall in love with Gray all over again and leaves you wondering what went wrong.
The other bad part
Everyone’s going to remember Davis’s ninth inning, and rightly so. But the Rangers also scored three runs in the seventh inning to make a 10-6 game 10-9. Jake McGee, Bryan Shaw, and Chris Rusin were responsible for that. In the same fashion as Davis’s ninth, the Rangers scored three of those runs due to the benefit of free passes — they had just one hit. There were even two runners on base when Rusin managed to get the Rockies out of the inning.
Two things stick out from that inning. One: The Rockies bullpen is flat-out bad, especially the middle part. Two: During the high leverage drama Adam Ottavino was just sitting on the bench trying not to sweat too much in the Texas heat. He pitched a clean eighth, but it might have been a good idea to call upon him to put out the seventh inning fire too. Maybe it wouldn’t have mattered in the end, and he can’t pitch all relief innings. But in a game that leaves such a bad taste, those decisions really stick out.
The Rockies and Mets begin a four-game series at Coors Field on Monday. It’s Tyler Anderson vs. Jacob deGrom in game one, and first pitch is at 6:40 MT.