Thursday, March 15, 2012

Spring Training Hits & Misses: Game 14 vs. Chicago


Jhoulys Chacin

Chacin had another strong outing today, tossing three shutout innings (only 44 pitches). He was scheduled and certainly positioned to go longer, but a "small" blister on his right index finger put an end to his afternoon. He'll get treatment for that and should be fine for his next scheduled outing.

Wilin Rosario

The Rockies top catching prospect locked and unloaded his second monster home run of the week. The first was a 400 foot plus shot off San Diego lefty Alex Hinshaw on Monday. Today's was a two-run blast off former Rockie Rodrigo Lopez. Rosario's raw power is unquestionable, so it's really just a matter of adjusting to better pitching and staying disciplined. It sounds like he's making noticeable improvement in both areas so far.

Jordan Pacheco

Hit the go-ahead two-run home run in the sixth that ended up being the difference. Think he's having a decent spring so far? I'd say so.


Ben Paulsen sent to minor league camp

It's not so much a miss because Paulsen is leaving camp (we all knew that was going to happen eventually), it's a miss because Paulsen is leaving camp before the manager's kid, Chad Tracy. That kinda sends the message that Tracy is higher on the team's depth chart, and that's a message I'm not comfortable receiving at this point. I guess he has some more time to prove me wrong (losing a popup in the sun today was a bad start), but I'd rather see Paulsen get some more meaningful reps to help prove me right.

You can read the full list of first round cuts over at the Denver Post.

Christian Friedrich

Well, this wasn't exactly the confidence building outing Friedrich needed today. In three innings, he allowed four runs (all earned) on six hits, including a big three-run homer off the bat of Cubs prospect Junior Lake. The home run actually came one batter after Tracy lost the popup in the sun, which didn't really cost Friedrich anything since the Infield Fly Rule was in effect, but the whole sequence was ugly followed by more ugly.

Got Their Work In

Eric Young Jr., Charlie Blackmon & Tyler Colvin

A couple things you can put real stock into during spring training are situational hitting and ability to create runs. The Rockies were successful in both areas today thanks to the three guys I'm highlighting here.

Young and Blackmon brought the speed element, combining to steal four bases in the first six innings. EY even forced a throwing error that allowed him to advance to third and eventually score. Blackmon's stolen bases towards the bottom of the order allowed Colvin to hit with a man on third and less than two outs on two different occasions, and in both situations Colvin delivered a sacrifice fly.

Those are the little things that would win the Rockies more baseball games if they could ever execute them when it counts. We know they're capable, now they just have to follow through.

Oh, yeah, and the score in case you're wondering

The Rockies used all of their power, speed and situational hitting to knock off the Chicago Cubs 7-5. Their Cactus League winning streak is now six and they seem to be playing better with each passing day.

What's next

The Rockies will play under the lights again on Friday when they take on the Cincinnati Reds at 8:05 MT. 850 KOA will have all the action for you.

More Rockies thoughts await you if you follow me on Twitter: @Townie813