The Sim Rockies (31-41) were shut out on Tuesday, thanks in large part to a masterful eight innings from the Sim Cardinals' Jack Flaherty. The Cards (31-41) were only able to eek out a single run in each of the first two innings, but that was enough to give them the 2-0 victory.
Good but not great
Kyle Freeland was coming off a couple of rough starts that inflated his ERA from around the 2.00 line to closer to 4.00. The first two innings surely made Rockies fans nervous that that was bound to continue. It started with a two-out Paul Goldschmidt home run (because of course it did) in the first. Back to back doubles in the second from Tyler O'Neill and Dexter Fowler made it 2-0. That would be all the Redbirds would need.
But don't fault Freeland. He allowed just two more hits (and more importantly, zero walks) in his six innings of work, allowing just the two runs with three strikeouts. Jeff Hoffman and Carlos Estevez added a clean inning each but, again, it just wasn't enough.
Sometimes when a team is shut out you can point to a lot of ineptitude at the plate. Other times it's the success from the mound. On Tuesday night it was the latter.
Flaherty went eight innings, allowing just two hits (and three walks) with five strikeouts. Flaherty was a down ballot Cy Young candidate in 2019 but came into this game with a 4.77 ERA for the last place Cards (it's not just the Sim Rockies having bad luck in the Sim). His eight shutout innings lowered his ERA to 4.37 and reminded everyone just what he's capable of.
You can watch the whole game or track down some individual highlights (such as they are) here.
Game two of the series will be on Wednesday. Starting for the Rockies will be Chi Chi González (2-5, 5.40 ERA) and Carlos Martínez (the Tsunami) (7-4, 3.99 ERA) will start for the Cards.
Next broadcast will be Friday against the Padres.