Phillies 8, Rockies 5 (boxscore)
What Went Wrong: They'll let you feel good and have fun watching baseball for a day or two... and then they're right back to the sloppy, lackadaisical, unfocused Rockies we've grown accustomed to over the last three seasons. Even if they only resort to it for an inning or two, it's too much, and it's difficult to overcome.
Of course it doesn't help when Jeremy Guthrie starts at Coors Field and you're darn near out of the game before even taking your first at-bat. But this still proved to be a winnable game down the stretch. A lazy pitch here. An awful baserunning mistake there. That's all it took to eliminate their chances to clinch this series.
Turning Point: The Rockies had chipped away with two runs in the 3rd and trailed only 4-2 in the 6th. That's where the currently struggling Adam Ottavino entered in relief and things got away again. And the frustrating thing about it is the inning lined up very well for Ottavino. Two outs, no one on base with the light-hitting Juan Pierre coming up. Pierre gets the single, steals second, but that's OK because you can walk Mike Fontenot (who really isn't more threatening that Pierre) intentionally to bring up the pitcher Vance Worley.
An absolutely perfect setup: Until Ottavino makes the one lazy, lousy pitch to Worley, who doubles home his first two RBIs of the season. That makes it 6-2 and puts you in a spot where even Wilin Rosario's three-run homer isn't enough. Brutal execution.
Jeremy Guthrie's Line: 4 2/3 IP, 4 ER, 7 H, 2 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 76 pitches (45 strikes)
Ugly, ugly start. Decent recovery to keep the team in the game. Somebody please offer us a Low-A prospect or something comparable because I'm running out of things to say about Guthrie other than we're all ready to move on.
Highlight of the Night: Watch Baby Bull Sr. connect for his home run
Not Highlight of the Night: Watch Tyler Colvin embarrass himself on the bases
That crap can't keep happening. Big league baseball players shouldn't have to be reminded to hustle and/or finish plays, but it happens so often with the Rockies over the past three seasons that at some point somebody has to be held accountable. It's not one player. It's several players. It doesn't matter how many pieces of furniture you move around, this stuff still exists because the people who are in a position to rectify the problem refuse to send the proper message the MOMENT the situation occurs.
I would start benching players for this stuff. Instantly. Why wouldn't you at this point? The message has to be sent. You can't worry about embarrassing the player, because he wasn't concerned about embarrassing the organization and the fanbase with his laziness. Make them accountable. Teach them they have a responsibility to play hard and play smart. Those are the two things they can control. Those are the two things they owe everybody. We can live with the results as long as you honor those two things.
What's Next: Series on Sunday at 1:10. I'll be at the Townsend family reunion in Wisconsin. Most of you will be watching Drew Pomeranz (1-3, 3.06) vs. Cole Hamels (10-4, 3.20). Hopefully we'll have good things to discuss tomorrow night.