It was a rainy night in Denver that played host to a slugfest at Coors on Friday. Germán Márquez’s start was one to forget, but his lineup bailed him out with an offensive output that saw them put their power on display as the Rockies prevailed over the Diamondbacks in a 13-10 walk-off victory.
Starting off hot
The scoring began early and often on Friday, initially by way of Jake McCarthy’s eighth home run of the year in the top of the first inning giving Arizona a quick 1-0 lead. That lead was not to last long as Ryan McMahon responded with a leadoff home run in the bottom of the frame.
The scoring continued in the second inning when Michael Toglia doubled and was immediately brought home on Elías Díaz’s eighth long ball of the year. The Rockies carried a 3-1 lead into the bottom of the fourth, and it was then that the bats would really wake up.
Big boppin fourth frame
Colorado did some serious damage in the bottom of the fourth, kicked off by a Randal Grichuk’s leadoff knock and Toglia’s walk. Elías Díaz singled to put the game at 4-1, and Alan Trejo’s double-play ball scored another run. McMahon then homered for the second time, giving Colorado a 6-1 advantage. They weren’t done yet though, as Yonathan Daza singled and scored on C.J. Cron’s mammoth two-run homer, his 27th of the year. The awesome blast went 504 feet - the longest in MLB this season, and the furthest in Coors Field history - and highlighted the inning by scoring Colorado’s seventh and eighth runs.
C.J. THAT BALL HAD A FAMILY pic.twitter.com/CFyD2W0wZ0— Colorado Rockies (@Rockies) September 10, 2022
The Rockies cruised into the fifth inning with a seven-run lead. Surely things would go smoothly on their way to a victory from here. Surely...
Yeah so... not great.
Germán Márquez completely lost command of his pitches, especially his fastball, in the top of the fifth. It’s unclear if the rain may have played a factor, but he certainly did not have his best stuff available. The first nine - NINE - batters of the inning reached at scored in the frame. Eight of those were due to Márquez, who allowed four hits, two walks, and a hit-by-pitch in that inning alone. He departed with the bases loaded and no outs recorded, and with the score now 8-6, the Diamondbacks were in prime position to tie things as Daulton Varsho stepped to the plate.
Reliever Austin Gomber’s first pitch was a hanging slider that Varsho cranked into right field for a go-ahead grand slam, an absolute gut punch to the Coors faithful. Gomber recorded the next three outs without incident, but the Rockies now had work to do to regain their lost lead.
Márquez’s final line read as four innings pitched with seven hits allowed, three walks, and nine earned runs against two strikeouts. He owns a 6.78 ERA at home this season, and has allowed 19 home runs in 15 starts at Coors. Not ideal.
Somehow, someway, Colorado was able to claw back to tie the contest. Doubles by Trejo and Daza in the bottom of the sixth scored the home team’s ninth run, while the tying tally crossed the plate in the seventh when Elehuris Montero (who entered the game after Brendan Rodgers was ejected for arguing a strikeout that he felt he held up on) rounded the bases all the way from first base on Díaz’s two-out double.
The game was improbably tied at ten as we entered the eighth inning. How was this wild battle going to end?
Díaz does it
Díaz knew he had a chance to end the game when he stepped up with two on and two outs in the bottom of the ninth, but it seemed he may not have an opportunity. Arizona reliever Caleb Smith seemed to eye the on-deck circle and appeared unsure of pitching to Díaz, but he eventually challenged Colorado’s catcher and made a fatal error. That error was a hung slider that Díaz didn’t miss, sending the ball to left field for a three-run walk-off home run, his ninth bomb of the season.
Díaz’s seven RBI were enough to finally get the Rockies the win on a cold, rainy night. #coors
Madison Bumgarner (6-13, 4.83 ERA) and José Ureña (3-6, 6.13 ERA) will hope to avoid allowing such offensive onslaughts when they take the mound for Arizona and Colorado, respectively, for the second game of the series on Saturday.
First pitch is at 6:10pm MDT. See you then!