Chad Kuhl and former Pittsburgh had very different experiences in Friday’s game. Kuhl struggled early and often with the Padres lineup, falling behind more often than not. Things started off on the wrong foot in the second inning when the Padres scored two on a Trent Grisham double and Aaron Nola single, both with two outs. Manny Machado would homer in the next inning to make it 3-0.
San Diego would add two more in the fourth frame before Kuhl was removed with two outs in the fifth. In all, he labored through 4 1⁄3 innings, allowing eight hits and a season-high five walks (one was intentional) while striking out just one. His career 5.12 ERA against the Padres will increase after this outing.
Very little can be said about Joe Musgrove that hasn’t been said already. He was absolutely dominant yet again, completely shutting down the Rockies over his six innings, allowing just four hits and striking out eight while keeping Colorado off the board. The right-hander 109 pitches and seemed to cruise through his outing, running into trouble only once in the game.
That was in the top of the fourth inning, when C.J. Cron stood at first base with two outs. José Iglesias lined a ball to left field that would have scored a run, but hopped over the left field wall for a ground rule double. With the Rockies down 3-0 at that point, a clutch base hit from Randal Grichuk could very well have gotten Colorado back in the game, but he grounded out to end the only significant threat of the evening.
Musgrove has not allowed a run in three of his last four outings.
The game within the game
In some lighter fun, old Pittsburgh teammates Musgrove and Kuhl decided a baseball game was not enough to sate their thirst for competition. They engaged in a game of tic-tac-toe, with Musgrove creating a board and placing his X first, while Kuhl responded when he took the mound in the bottom of the inning.
The tic-tac-toe game would end in a tie.
Streaks - good and bad
Connor Joe saw his 35-game on-base streak end as he went 0-for-4 in the loss. There is another streak that continued, though - that of the Rockies’ inability to win back-to-back games. They’ve now played 33 games in a row without consecutive victories, the longest such streak in their history.
The Rockies could take little positives away from their fourth shutout loss of the season, other than Lucas Gilbreath tossing a scoreless inning. That was pretty cool.
The Rockies and Padres will play a doubleheader on Saturday. The first game will see Ryan Feltner (1-2, 5.85 ERA) start for Colorado, while Mike Clevinger (1-0, 3.18 ERA) gets the ball for San Diego.
Game one’s first pitch is at 2:10pm MDT. See you then!