Sunday, April 8, 2012

Rock Solid Recrap: Sundays are back in Colorado

Astros 3, Rockies 2 (boxscore

What Went Wrong: Same as last night. Same as practically every Sunday from the 2011 season. Colorado's offense mounted few relevant threats against Bud Norris and the Astros bullpen. They were awful with runners in scoring position — 0-for-5 (3-for-17 in the series). And they backed that up with defensive letdowns at the absolute worst possible time.

That's the formula we've grown accustomed to. That's the formula Dan O'Dowd desperately tried to destroy with his string of offseason changes. It's not off to a promising start.

Of course Jim Tracy is going to catch a lot of flack for his usual Sunday lineup antics. Understandably so. But I have to admit I understood his thinking today (scary I know) initially, and didn't hate it, either. Of course my 20/20 hindsight vision hates it now, but five hours ago I was willing to give him a pass.

Yes, it would be ideal to spread the off days out. (Hopefully he does from now on) But the opening weekend congest things a bit. I think Tracy wanted to show consistency starting the same lineup on both Friday and Saturday, which is fine. You're obviously not going to bench regulars in the home opener. And he didn't want those bench players — most of whom were swinging hot bats at the end of spring — sitting idle for an entire week.

It's a tough thing to balance. For all his faults, I won't go after him for his thought process or the actual lineup. His late game strategy is much easier for me to target.

He made the call to bring in Dexter Fowler for defense with a one run lead in the eighth. That was a good start. Colvin shifted to right, upgrading that position as well. Cuddyer moved to first leaving Todd Helton on the bench. That proved costly. But the biggest move was the one he didn't make, leaving Jordan Pacheco to man third while Chris Nelson stayed glued to the bench.

Lineup Card: Rockies @ Astros 4-8-12

Colorado Rockies (1-1)

  1. Tyler Colvin (CF)
  2. Jordan Pacheco (3B)
  3. Carlos Gonzalez (LF)
  4. Troy Tulowitzki (SS)
  5. Jason Giambi (1B)
  6. Michael Cuddyer (RF)
  7. Wilin Rosario (C)
  8. Jonathan Herrera (2B)
  9. Juan Nicasio (P)
As always, Jim Tracy empties the bench for a Sunday game. But you know something? This lineup doesn't appear to suck. This lineup is actually intriguing. This lineup is, dare I say, a little bit exciting. Now I hope they're a lot bit productive.

Houston Astros (1-1)
  1. Jordan Schafer (CF)
  2. Jose Altuve (2B)
  3. J.D. Martinez (LF)
  4. Carlos Lee (1B)
  5. Brian Bogusevic (RF)
  6. Chris Johnson (3B)
  7. Jason Castro (C)
  8. Marwin Gonzalez (SS)
  9. Bud Norris (P)
Here's something to think about; If the Astros win this game today, they will have a winning record for the first time since July 29, 2009. I'd really prefer the Rockies not be the team directly responsible for that.  


— Recrap: Rockies Off Little Support For Jamie Moyer. Heaven & Helton

— Rockies bumble and get bombed... Purple Row

— Always a good idea to check in with Michelle Hoag after Rockies games. Here's what she had to say about last night's setback. Rox Pile 

— Looking for a thorough review of some baseball apps for your iPhone or iPoc Touch? Frank has you covered over at Rox Blox.

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