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Marlins 7, Rockies 4: Too little, too late for the Rox

At least Colorado didn’t commit an error

MLB: Colorado Rockies at Miami Marlins Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Elias Díaz made this one look a lot closer than it was by coming up with a big three-run homer in the ninth inning. His fourth blast of the year was the Rockies first hit with runners in scoring position in the game, bringing in rookies Elehuris Montero and Sean Bouchard.

The homer came with one out, but Garrett Hampson and Yonathan Daza popped out and struck out, respectfully, to end the game with another loss in Miami.

Nope, not even a leadoff triple

That’s right. There just weren’t many scenarios in which the Rockies could drive in runs. Brendan Rodgers hit his first triple of the season to start the sixth inning.

He was then stranded there with the heart of the order behind him. Charlie Blackmon and C.J. Cron both struck out and Ryan McMahon flied out to shallow left field. The Rockies led off the second and third innings with walks for Randal Grichuk and Hampson, but neither even made it to second base. In the fourth, McMahon hit a one-out single, moved to second on a passed ball, and got to third on a Grichuk flyout only to be stranded there. Daza started the eighth inning with a single and then stuck like glue to first. Through eight innings, the Rockies went 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position and only managed five hits.

The only run the Rockies did manage was in the first inning when Daza led off the game with a double. He then made it to third on an errant pickoff attempt before coming home on a sac fly by Blackmon.

Miami heat gets to Kuhl

Things were going so well — for two innings anyway. Despite two walks, Chad Kuhl was in control and had a 1-0 lead. Then came the third inning. Miami’s Miguel Rojas led off with a single, and despite getting one out, Jon Berti followed with a triple and Jazz Chisholm Jr. continued his assault of the Rockies with an RBI single to put the Marlins up 2-1. After a mound visit from Darryl Scott, Kuhl was able to retire Jorge Soler for the second out. Just when things were like Kuhl could limit the damage, that’s when Garrett Cooper blasted a 413-foot homer to center to put Miami up 4-1.

Kuhl remained in the game and did rebound, retiring seven straight batters and not allowing any more runs through five innings. His final line: 5 innings, 4 runs, 6 hits, 2 walks, 3 strikeouts.

Maybe one inning for Gomber?

In his Rockies bullpen debut, Austin Gomber had one great inning and one horrific one. He went 3-up-3-down in the sixth, but then was hit hard in the seventh. With two outs, the trouble started when he walked Berti to set the stage for Chisholm Jr., who promptly smashed a homer 414 feet to increase Miami’s lead to 6-1. Soler followed with a solo shot of his own, putting the Rockies down 7-1. A single by Cooper forced Bud Black to then pull Gomber.

Gomber made 23 appearances – all starts – for the Rockies in 2021, his first year with the team. In 12 starts this season, the 28-year-old lefty was 3-7 with a 6.43 ERA, 49 strikeouts, and a 1.476 WHIP. Gomber debuted with the Cardinals in 2018, making 43 appearances over two years, including COVID-shortened 2020, and only 15 of them were starts. In his career as a starter, he’s 18-18 with a 4.70 ERA in 251 innings with 232 strikeouts and a 1.351 WHIP. As a reliever, he’s pitched 33 innings and now has an ERA of 4.91 with 26 strikeouts and a 1.455 WHIP.

López dominates

After their biggest offensive showing in 10 years in Miami on Tuesday night, Pablo López quieted the Rockies bats on Wednesday. He held the Rockies to four hits in seven innings with three strikeouts. Even though he walked three, it didn’t matter. López’s changeup, balanced with his 4-seam fastball and a few curveballs, sinkers, and cutters, kept the Rockies off their game. The Rockies had runners on in every inning but the fifth, but López was masterful at escaping jams.

At least the defense was better

Phew! The Rockies didn’t make an error. Actually, it was quite the opposite with three outstanding plays. The first came in the first inning when the Rockies called a pitch out, leading to Díaz firing the ball down to Rodgers, who made a great catch and tag to rob Chisholm Jr. of a steal. In the bottom of the eighth, it was Grichuk’s turn to show off his arm. After picking up a single by Miguel Rojas, Grichuk unleashed the cannon to McMahon, who made a great tag that knocked Luke Williams’ helmet off his head and sent him into the dugout.

The play changed the situation from runners at the corners with one out to a runner at first with two outs. Jacob Stallings was then robbed of a hit by a diving Rodgers, who sealed Lucas Gilbreath’s throw a scoreless frame.

Up next

The Rockies are Marlins will play the third and final game of this series on Thursday at 10:10 a.m. MDT. Kyle Freeland (3-5, 4.46 ERA) will be on the mound for the Rockies, while Braxton Garrett (1-2, 4.85 ERA) will get the start for Miami. The Rockies will be looking to prevent the sweep.