Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Lineup Card: Rockies @ Giants

Manny Delcarmen Trade Thoughts (here)

As I said in my Recap of last night's victory, the Rockies need to score some runs tonight.  Preferably some runs early in the game.

The Giants, to me, are a mentally fragile team.  We saw how quickly they faded away last season when they dealt with adversity.  Though they are far more talented this season, they are showing signs of a team that could fade again with a little more adversity.

Score early.  Plant some seeds of doubt.  Take advantage.  Even things up in the loss column.

Rockies Lineup (69-61)
  1. 2B  Young
  2. CF  Fowler
  3. RF  Gonzalez
  4. 3B  Mora
  5. 1B  Giambi
  6. LF  Spilborghs
  7. C    Olivo
  8. SS  Barmes
  9. P    Rogers
Giants Lineup (72-60)
  1. CF  Torres
  2. 2B  Sanchez
  3. 1B  Huff
  4. LF  Burrell
  5. RF  Guillen
  6. C    Posey
  7. 3B  Sandoval
  8. SS  Uribe
  9. P    Bumgarner
Oh, Cody Ross, where are you?  

Delcarmen Trade Thoughts

The Rockies acquired reliever Manny Delcarmen from the Boston Red Sox in exchange for Class A pitching prospect Chris Balcom-Miller.

Of course the first question after any trade is who won?

Hell if I know.

I'm sure you can find a number cruncher somewhere that will tell you they know, so if you need to know that bad, consult them. But I assure you they don't know either, because no one knows until the parties involved actually perform for their new team.

In the case of Balcom-Miller, he'd either have to make the big leagues, which is far from a guarantee despite all the positive reports on his development in recent weeks, or bring them back some proven talent in another deal.

Delcarmen is another one of those guys (Kip Wells, Tim Redding and Jason Marquis were others) that Dan O'Dowd has targeted for years, and once the price dropped, he pulled the trigger. If you recall Delcarmen's name was bandied about in the Todd Helton discussions back in 2007.

Manny has struggled quite a bit over the past two seasons. His walk totals (28,34,28 respectively) over the past three seasons make me a little uneasy. We've seen enough of relievers struggling with command this season to last a decade.

But there is a track record of effective pitching for Delcarmen. I hate to fall into the cliched "change of scenery" trap that always accompanies such a trade, but maybe Bob Apodaca will see something easily correctable that gets Delcarmen back to peak form.

It's worth a shot.

The potential downside -- You lose a prospect that seems to be on the path to the big leagues at some point. No guarantee.

The potential upside -- You add an affordable arm to your bullpen for the stretch run, and possibly 2-3 years beyond.

Why not?

Rock Solid Recap: Thank You Cody Ross

And Bruce Bochy. Can't believe the Giants didn't have a better, more comfortable outfielder (in that ballpark) available to play the 9th inning.

The Rockies desperately needed a break. I didn't think that break was going to come on a Carlos Gonzalez broken bat. Neither did Cody Ross. But given the way Carlos Gonzalez has played in the month of August, maybe we both should have known better.

Ross misread the bat shattering contact as a blooper into short right field. The ball continued sailing, Ross turned tail and started chasing, Dexter Fowler scored easily from first, Gonzalez slid safely into third, the relay throw bounced feebly past Pablo Sandoval into the camera well, Rockies take the lead and hold on to a 2-1 victory.


Gonzalez heroics (and luck) aside, the win and game ball belong to Jorge De La Rosa. He wasn't very efficient early, but he pushed his way through the first four innings, settled in nicely, and gave his club seven innings of one run baseball.

That's why De La Rosa is going to make a lot of money in the off-season.

Rafael Betancourt is credited the official win after a 1-2-3 8th. Nice to see that clean and efficient inning from Raffy.

Huston Street, working for the third straight day yet again, needed a little help from the San Francisco atmosphere on a long drive hit by Aubrey Huff, needed a little help from a diving Jonathan Herrera, and needed a little luck on a line drive come backer off the bat of Buster Posey, but the bottom line is, Huston Street pitched a 1-2-3 9th inning to earn his 13th save.

Besides, he was owed a little good luck after some of the tough breaks he had experienced lately.

Another thing we can't overlook is how important Dexter Fowler's walk was leading off the 9th inning. Down in the count 1-2, Fowler spit on some pitcher's pitches by Sanchez that Rockies batters couldn't resist all night. Great approach and patience, with a game-changing result.


Esmil Rogers vs. Madison Bumgarner

This has to be a big offensive game for the Rockies. Rogers has struggled lately. Huston Street is a little gassed. The bullpen as a whole is tired. Best way to remedy such problems are to score early, score often, and score a couple more late.