Whatever it takes.
A win is a win.
All the clichés fit this one as the Rockies needed 11 innings, but finally got the win when Ranger reliever Brett Martin threw a curveball in the dirt, allowing Ryan McMahon to rush the plate and slide under a charging Martin. McMahon started the inning on second and was moved to third on a grounder by Charlie Blackmon. After Joshua Fuentes drew an intentional walk, Brendan Rodgers came to the plate. Despite a quiet 0-for-4 day at that point, all he needed to take a low curveball with a 3-2 count to win the game.
The Rockies got the win and the Rangers earned their 13th straight loss on the road.
For the third straight game, Márquez pitched like the ace we know and love. Specifically, he pitched seven solid innings, striking out seven Rangers and surrendering only two hits with two walks and one run. When he exited the game in the seventh for a pitch hitter, he had retired 12 straight Texas batters. He forced nine ground balls and five flyouts. Five of his seven strikeouts on Thursday came on the knuckle curve. Over his last three starts, Márquez has posted a 0.90 ERA with 21 strikeouts while only giving up two runs on nine hits in 20 innings of work.
Nearly shutdown bullpen
When Márquez left the game, he had a one-run lead. Then Carlos Estévez entered in the eighth and surrendered a solo homer to pinch hitter Khris Davis. Estévez also gave up an infield single, but got a strikeout and two flyouts to end the inning.
For the next three innings, the Rangers offense disappeared. In the ninth, Daniel Bard was untouchable. He struck out the side, which consisted of some of the best Texas hitters in Adolis García, Joey Gallo, and Nick Solakall on nasty sliders to hold the tie. Tyler Kinley also dominated the Rangers in the 10th with a three-up-three-down inning with two strikeouts. In the 11th, it was Mychal Givens’s turn to shut down Texas. He started with striking out Charlie Culberson and then picked off Jonah Heim who was trying to steal third. Givens ended the effort with a groundout to earn the win.
Lacking clutch hitting
The Rockies left 11 runners on base and went 3-for-13 with runners in scoring position on Tuesday. Luckily, Blackmon and Yonathan Daza both came up big with two outs and it was enough to get the Rockies to the 11th. In the first inning, following a McMahon double and C.J. Cron single, both with two outs, Blackmon hit an RBI single to put the Rockies up 1-0. In the sixth, a little random rain helped fuel a rally in sixth. Dom Nuñez started the inning off with a double, but Márquez then struck out and Raimel Tapia lined out. That’s when Daza came up big with a single to center field to plate Nuñez.
Texas starter Dane Dunning only got the Rockies to strike out three times before exiting with two outs in the fifth. Then the Rockies struck out nine times in the next 5 1/3 innings against the Ranger bullpen.
Magical fielding Fuentes
Fuentes made a handful of outstanding plays from third, including a long throw to first from foul ground that made it in plenty of time to throw out Nick Solak in the seventh and this barehanded gem.
His name is...Joshua pic.twitter.com/dI4OoqVpAW— AT&T SportsNet™ | RM (@ATTSportsNetRM) June 2, 2021
He made another highlight-reel play throwing from one knee. You can see the far throw and the knee throw here.
On the flip side, the Rockies also committed two errors with Rodgers missing Cron at first when trying to turn a double play. He got the force out at second before the error, but Nate Lowe, who had walked earlier in the inning, scored on the play, tying the game at 1-1 at the time. McMahon made another error in the eighth when Isiah Kiner-Falefa hit an infield single and McMahon’s throw went wide right. Luckily, no damage came from that error.
On Tuesday, the Rockies made a Triple-A switch, recalling Alan Trejo to the active roster and sending down Connor Joe. With Trevor Story on the 10-day IL, Trejo can fill in better at second and shortstop. Having recently recalled Matt Adams, the Rockies seem to be opting for having a left-handed bat on the bench and as a backup first baseman over Joe. The Rockies also removed left-handed reliever Ben Bowden from the 10-day DL, but also optioned him to Triple-A Albuquerque. Bowden suffered a left shoulder strain on May 15. Bowden pitched a pair of scoreless innings in relief on Monday and Saturday. He only gave up one run and struck out three, but the Rockies opted to keep him with the Isotopes and remain left-handerless in the bullpen.
The Rockies and Rangers return to the diamond for the second game of the three-game series on Wednesday night at 6:40 p.m. MT. Antonio Senzatela (1-5, 4.97 ERA) will get the start for the Rockies and he’ll go against former Rockie Jordan Lyles (2-4, 5.79).