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Rockies 4, Padres 2: A Marquee Márquez Matinee

Strong pitching from Germán Márquez and the Rockies bullpen combined with a few clutch hits to nab a series split in San Diego.

The Colorado Rockies have earned back-to-back wins for the first time in 37 days as they topple the San Diego Padres 4-2 at Petco Park. An excellent start from Germán Márquez, strong work from the bullpen, and a few clutch hits led the Rockies to a series split against the Padres and a 4-3 record over this seven game California road trip.

Mighty Márquez

Rockies starting pitcher Germán Márquez put together his best start in months and looked better than we’ve seen him since his first start way back in April. Márquez pitched seven complete innings for the first time since that April 9th start, He gave up just two earned runs, his fewest since April 9th. He didn’t walk a single batter for the first time since April 9th. Márquez kept the Padres off the board through the first four innings, and one bad pitch—a hanging slider—in the fifth inning was punished for a home run. He held the Padres to just three total hits until his final inning of work. In the seventh inning Márquez allowed one more run to score via two singles and a sac fly before inducing an inning ending double play. This was the Márquez that Rockies fans have been waiting to see all season, as he earned both his second consecutive quality start and second consecutive win while striking out six batters.

Dazzling Daza

Yonathan Daza was a man on a mission against the Padres this afternoon. He went 3-for-5 while scoring as the first run of the game for the Rockies. All three of his base hits—each a single—came against Padres starter Blake Snell. Daza was so automatic against Snell that it led to a humorous call from Rockies TV commentator Drew Goodman:

“He (Snell) hasn’t got Daza. Daza’s 2-for-2,” Drew said before an immediate crack of the bat was heard. “Daza’s 3-for-3.”

Daza also kept Germán Márquez’ from giving up a second home run to the Padres. When Ha-Seong Kim came to bat in the bottom of the sixth inning, he hit the ball in a manner that seemed destined to leave the stadium. Daza made a leaping catch over the wall to keep it in the park and help the Rockies keep their lead at the time.

Clutch When It Counts

The Rockies also relied upon some clutch hits from batters like José Iglesias, CJ Cron, and Ryan McMahon. Iglesias—who continues to be one of the best road hitters in the National League—was 2-for-4 this afternoon with a run and an RBI. He raises his average on the season to .309 while hitting .365 on the road, a mark higher than Bryce Harper. CJ Cron was 2-for-3 with a walk during his day at the plate and scored as the Rockies’ second run. Perhaps the most clutch hit of the afternoon came from Ryan McMahon. McMahon—with two outs and two strikes—in the top of the eighth inning hit a double down the right field to score José Iglesias and Sam Hilliard (pinch running for Cron) and put the Rockies ahead for the final 4-2 score.

No Kinley? No Problem.

One of the Rockies’ best bullpen arms in Tyler Kinley was placed on the 15-day IL prior to the game with an ulnar nerve injury in his throwing arm. Kinley has an ERA of just 0.75 and has been the anchor in the arm barn. However, the Rockies bullpen remained steadfast in his absence. Thanks to Germán Márquez lasting seven strong innings today, the Rockies bullpen needed to utilize just two pitches. The local lefty Lucas Gilbreath took control of the eighth inning. He walked one batter, struck out a batter, and induced a lovely and inning ending 1-4-3 double play.

Daniel Bard worked a scoreless 1-2-3 ninth inning for his 13th save of the season. Despite looking visibly uncomfortable while on the mound, Bard threw his standard gas and struck out the side in quick succession. While his discomfort is concerning—especially with Kinley on the IL—both Bard and Bud Black were adamant that there was no need for alarm, especially with an off day tomorrow for Bard to rest. Bard has an ERA of just 2.13 this season and has been a stalwart presence in late innings.

Coming Up Next

The Rockies will fly home tonight and enjoy a well deserved Monday off before they kick off their next series: a three game home set against the Cleveland Guardians. Antonio Senzatela will take the mound for the Rockies while the Guardians will start staff ace Shane Bieber. First pitch is at 6:40 PM MDT.