The Rockies dropped the series opener against the homer happy San Francisco Giants Monday afternoon. Kyle Freeland didn’t make it out of the fifth inning as the Giants showed why they are the cream of the MLB this year.
Freeland stung by homers
It was déjà vu for the Rockies pitching staff on this Labor Day afternoon. The day after getting blown out by the Braves, Kyle Freeland allowed four home runs to the Giants, including a leadoff blast from Darin Ruf that set the stage for a good old fashioned Coors Field slugfest. Buster Posey also added a solo shot in the first, continuing his turn-back-the-clock themed year, now giving him 17 total in 2021. Thairo Estrada added two homers for the Giants, and Freeland’s day ended in the fifth inning with an ugly final line: seven runs (all earned) on nine hits and three walks, with six strikeouts. Five of the runs were scored via home run, but Freeland battled traffic all afternoon.
Rockies take their turn at the long ball
Not to be outdone, the Rockies had some long balls of their own. Kevin Gausman pounded the strike zone all night, and ultimately came away with the win, but not before the Rockies got ahold of a couple pitches. Ryan McMahon hit his 21st of the year to lead off the second inning to bring the Rockies deficit to one, but unfortunately that was as close as the Rockies would get.
Garrett Hampson tagged Gausman for his ninth of the year in the seventh inning, but by that time the game was out of hand. Trevor Story added a two-run blast in the eighth to cap the Rockies offensive output for the day.
Blackmon moves up in career games played in style
Charlie Blackmon played his 1,248th game in a Rockies uniform Monday, passing Carlos González for second all time in Rockies history. He did not show his age, legging out a triple to score Raimel Tapia in the sixth.
Charlie Blackmon's 4th triple of the season scores Raimel Tapia pic.twitter.com/v5bsC7Ds5I— RoxGifsVids (@RoxGifsVids) September 6, 2021
Blackmon has spent his entire 11-year career with the Rockies, and has two years remaining on his contract. With no other active Rockies in the top five of career games played, Blackmon will look to solidify his position among Rockies mainstays. And while his accomplishment is impressive, it also underlines the impressiveness of the career games played leader: Todd Helton with 2,247 - over an additional six full seasons of games ahead of Blackmon.
The Rockies will try to even their series against the Giants tomorrow at Coors. Logan Webb (8-3, 2.56 ERA), another Giant enjoying a stellar year, will take the ball against Chi Chi Gonzalez (3-6, 6.13 ERA) for the Rockies. First pitch is 6:40 MDT.