Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Rock Solid Recap: Flawed, Frustrating and Fun. Our 2012 Rockies!

It's May 2nd and I'm already worried about making it through this season alive. The 2012 Rockies simply won't quit, but they refuse to make it easy, and because of that it looks like we as fans will be put through the wringer day in and day out. 

They're going to drive us crazy. They're going to give us headaches. But what makes it all OK at the end day is that they're going to entertain us. And for that, I think it's time we all embrace them for what they are and see how long can hold up.

I'm giving myself until the 4th of July.

Rockies 8, Dodgers 5 (boxscore)

Winning Player: Oh, let's see here, how about Carlos Gonzalez?

Gonzalez added two more big bombs to his total today — off the defending Cy Young who's also left-handed — giving him seven homers in his last nine games. Over that same stretch CarGo is 16-for-34 with 16 RBI and 5 BB. He's absolutely sizzling right now and there should be no end in sight as long as he remains selective (aka swings at strikes).

Wilin Rosario also added a home run off Kershaw, making this the first three home run game he's allowed according to Dodgers Thoughts.

Turning Point: Great starting pitching meant it was the bullpens turn to stink today, and that's what they — Rex Brothers and Rafael Betancourt — did, blowing 2-1 and 5-3 leads respectively in the 8th and 9th innings.

But it was after that Dodgers rally in the 8th — Damn Hairstons! — that the Rockies immediately went to work themselves against Kershaw. Marco Scutaro led if off with a single. Jonathan Herrera bunted him over. Then Dexter Fowler got Scutaro home with his own single to center. Those three hitters set the stage for CarGo's second blast and that sequence is what set the Rockies up to win this baseball game.

Lineup Card: Rockies vs Dodgers 5-2-12

Last Night's Recrap: The Machine Is Battered... Perhaps Broken


Colorado Rockies (11-12)

  1. Jonathan Herrera (2B)
  2. Dexter Fowler (CF)
  3. Carlos Gonzalez (LF)
  4. Troy Tulowitzki (SS)
  5. Todd Helton (1B)
  6. Michael Cuddyer (RF)
  7. Wilin Rosario (C)
  8. Chris Nelson (3B)
  9. Drew Pomeranz (P)
Pre-planned off days for Marco Scutaro and Ramon Hernandez this afternoon. I'm guessing neither will be too disappointed to avoid Kershaw.

Los Angeles Dodgers (17-7)
  1. Tony Gwynn (LF)
  2. Mark Ellis (2B)
  3. Matt Kemp (CF)
  4. Juan Rivera (1B)
  5. Andre Ethier (RF)
  6. Jerry Hairston (3B)
  7. Justin Sellers (SS)
  8. A.J. Ellis (C)
  9. Clayton Kershaw (P)
Sure the big boys like Kemp, Ethier and even David Wright before them have all come up with big hits against the Rockies, but it's been their inability to retire Mark & A.J. Ellis, along with other role players like Ruben Tejada and Kirk Nieuwenhuis that have killed them this homestand. Today would be a good day to start putting the pests away. 

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

Rock Solid Recrap: The Machine Is Battered... Perhaps Broken

Dodgers 7, Rockies 6 (boxscore)

What Went Wrong: This will give you a pretty good idea...

When the starting pitchers were in, this game was all Dodgers. Once the bullpens took over, though, the Rockies were able to fight — and I mean they fought valiantly — thanks to the outstanding work of Josh Roenicke, Matt Belisle and Matt Reynolds — seriously, those guys all deserve more than a simple pat on the ass — and a relentless offense that has feasted on bullpens during this homestand.

Unfortunately, it just wasn't enough... because.

Turning Point: In ten career starts and one relief appearance (64 innings) against the Dodgers prior to this evening, Chacin had allowed only ONE home run.

Four batters into this game, he'd already allowed two and trailed 4-0. He then allowed a third home run in the 5th to A.J. Ellis which ended up being the decisive blow.

WARNING: Graphic Pitching Line To Follow 

Jhoulys Chacin's Final Line: 4 2/3, 7 ER (career high), 11 hits, 4 BB, 3 K, 3 HR, 112 pitches (63 strikes)

If Dee Gordon's first career home run didn't rattle Chacin off his foundation right from the start, it's likely Andre Ethier's three-run homer that followed did the trick. It was a brutal start, and although he rebounded to a very small degree just to work into the 5th inning, it was an all around painful performance to watch.

On a 1-10 scale, his command was a 2. His velocity showed no improvement. Basically the Dodgers just sat back and barreled him up all night long because they're all professionals and that's what professional hitters do to struggling pitchers. In fact, of the 11 hits Chacin allowed, I can only picture one that was a cheapie. There may have been another one or two, but they all seemed to be struck with violent purpose.