The offense started clicking and earned tacos for the first time of 2020 in the Rockies’ 8-3 win on Tuesday night in Oakland. Antonio Senzatela pitched five solid innings and the bullpen was impressive once again as the Rockies improved to 4-1 on the season while Oakland dropped to 4-2.
Everyone chips in
Every hitter in the starting lineup got a hit, including firsts of the season for Sam Hilliard and Raimel Tapia, who both had great nights. In the fourth inning, Hilliard hit a two-run homer to score Tapia, who reached on a single just before, to put the Rockies up 3-1.
Hilliard also doubled, while Tapia finished with two hits and an RBI. The first hitting rally started in the fifth when Trevor Story, Charlie Blackmon, Nolan Arenado, and Daniel Murphy hit four consecutive singles, with Murphy’s driving in Story. Tapia then hit a sac fly and the Rockies were up 5-1. The doubles came out in the fifth when Ryan McMahon walked, Tapia singled, and Tony Wolters crushed an RBI double down the right field line. David Dahl followed with another double, this time scoring two runs and putting the Rockies up 8-3. The bottom of the lineup, the 6-9 hitters of McMahon, Tapia, Hilliard, and Wolters, went 7-for-17 with five runs and four RBI.
Bullpen just keeps rolling
First up, Tyler Kinley made his Rockies debut with a scoreless inning and two strikeouts in the sixth. The feel-good story of Daniel Bard continued to cruise along with Bard throwing two decent innings, giving up one run on two hits with two strikeouts. He got into a bit of a jam in the eighth when Matt Olson and Mark Canha hit back-to-back singles and advanced to third and second, respectively, on a wild pitch with no outs. After striking out Khris Davis, Robbie Grossman hit into a fielder’s choice that scored a run and then Bard got Chad Pinder to pop out. Carlos Estévez then pitched a perfect ninth to seal the win.
Senzatela starts 2020 with a victory
Armed with new secondary pitches, Antonio Senzatela threw well enough to record his first win after going five innings, giving up two runs on six hits with three walks and three strikeouts. His new variety of pitches led to a higher pitch count, but also seemed to keep the A’s off balance. He threw fastballs 57 percent of the time, sliders 17 percent, changeups 14 percent, and curve balls 12 percent of the time. Senzatela needed 31 pitches to do it, but he got out of a bases-loaded jam in the first inning by getting Davis to pop up. In the second inning, Senzatela sent the A’s down in order on nine pitches. He loaded the bases again in the third after giving up a single and two walks, but held the A’s to one run on a sacrifice fly by Canha. The only other run came in the fifth inning when Canha reached on a rare error by Arenado, which allowed Ramón Laureano to score. The performance was enough to believe that the first four starters of Colorado’s rotation could be something special in the 60-game sprint.
The Rockies and A’s will be back at it Wednesday at 1:40 MT to conclude the Oakland portion of the season series between the two teams (the Rockies will host the A’s Sept. 15 and 16). Germán Márquez will be looking for his first win of the 2020 season for the Rockies.