Each Halloween I have a tendency to think about things that frighten or have traumatized me. I saw parts of Sam Raimi’s The Evil Dead when I was a very young lad and that scared me to the point where it took almost two decades before I could even attempt to watch it again. Things such as scary clowns, dolls like Chucky, and spiders have a way of sticking with you and triggering those fears that still haunt you. The same can be said for the Colorado Rockies and today seemed as good a time as any to revisit some of the moments in Rockies history that still haunt me.
Stanton’s Gargantuan Smash
In the debacle of a season that was 2012, the Rockies sent old man Jamie Moyer out to face the Miami Marlins. Things were looking good for the Rockies heading to the bottom of the fourth as they led 4-2 but unfortunately things quickly soured. With the bases loaded and two outs, the soft-tossing Moyer was set to face the slugger Giancarlo Stanton.
The at-bat was quite a battle as Stanton managed to work the count full until he demolished a ball to left field for a grand slam to give the Marlins the lead. Not only was it a devastating hit for Moyer and the Rockies, but it was literally a devastating hit to the brand new Marlins scoreboard as the ball slammed into the screen and blacked out a panel section. To this day, I still think about that home run and it will wake me up in a cold sweat.
A Nightmare on Blake Street
The Rockies are no strangers to struggling relievers and bullpen implosions but one performance in 2014 sticks with me because of the baffling horror of it all. On April 8, 2014, the Rockies were playing the Chicago White Sox at Coors Field. Franklin Morales didn’t have a great outing, but he managed to pitch into the seventh inning before giving way to the bullpen. In the eighth inning with the Rockies down 7-2, Walt Weiss turned to reliever Wilton Lopez to attempt a clean inning and just get through the game.
Lopez immediately gave up back-to-back home runs to Avisail Garcia and Alexei Ramírez followed by a single to Tyler Flowers. He was then able to get a pair of ground-outs before things truly unraveled when he gave up an RBI double to Marcus Semien, a two-run homer to José Abreu, and three straight singles to score another run. His six runs allowed on eight hits put the game well out of reach and basically ended his big league career. The Rockies optioned Lopez to Triple-A Colorado Springs the next day and he would never appear with the parent club ever again.
The Brewers clear the bases
Like a repressed memory, I had forgotten about the time that the Rockies allowed three runs on a wild pitch until Jomboy made a breakdown video about it in 2020. Another haunting incident from 2014, the Rockies were playing the Brewers at Coors Field when things got out of hand in the third inning. With Christian Friedrich struggling on the hill, the Brewers managed to load the bases with pitcher Wily Peralta up to the plate with two outs.
By some paranormal circumstance, Friedrich fired a fastball up the zone that sailed to the backstop. Rockies catcher Michael McKenry made a valiant effort to try and retrieve the ball and fire towards home for a play at the plate to get the runner but instead had a throwing error sail towards the Brewers dugout allowed another run to score.
Friedrich picked up the ball and slowly walked back towards home where McKenry stood slumped over and staring at the ground. No one was paying attention to Jean Segura who rounded third and bolted home to score the third run. It’s an embarrassing moment in Rockies history and unfortunately encapsulates everything about Rockies baseball.
The horrors live on...
I could sit here and write for hours about the other terrifying things that still haunt me about the Rockies. We could talk about trades, organizational decisions, awful contracts, and the cold, lifeless eyes of Dinger but at the end of the day, it’s better to focus on the good things and don’t let the moments haunt you forever.
What moments still haunt you from Rockies history? Share your thoughts in the comments below and Happy Halloween!
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On Thursday, it was announced that Ryan McMahon was a finalist for the Gold Glove Award at third base along with Nolan Arenado and Manny Machado. Rockies fans are eager for McMahon to win his first Gold Glove, but there is the danger that voters will instead opt for Arenado or Machado simply due to veteran history as opposed to the actual superior defense that McMahon displayed on the field.
Jon Gray’s interest in paranormal activity and his hobby as a ghost hunter took front and center in this video from Outside The Lines that made the rounds on Twitter on Friday. The video focuses mainly on the mystery surrounding the Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee and the strange occurrences that big leaguers have experienced there.
On the Farm: Arizona Fall League Edition
It was a rough night for Michael Toglia as the young first baseman went hitless in four at-bats during the Rafters' loss to the Desert Dogs. The lack of success at the top of the lineup spelled trouble for the Rafters as Toglia had a pair of strikeouts to contribute to the nine strikeouts the team had on the night. On the other hand, Jake Bird had a notable appearance on the mound in the seventh inning. He quickly tallied a strikeout and a groundout before issuing a walk and giving up a single to the Desert Dogs. With two men on Bird managed to strike out James Outman and eliminate the threat and lower his ERA to 1.69 in the Arizona Fall League.
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