Saturday, August 20, 2011

Rock Solid Recap: If we didn't see it, did it really happen?

I heard a rumor the Colorado Rockies played a baseball game Saturday afternoon, and won that baseball game by playing hard all afternoon, not making too many stupid mistakes, not giving away at-bats, and maybe just being the better overall baseball team.

Can anyone confirm this?

Rockies 7, Dodgers 6 (13)  (boxscore)

I guess I'll just have to go based on the boxscore.

This team. I swear. One day I compliment them or a specific player, the next game they repay me with a dud. One day I rip them for not battling all nine innings, the next game they battle for 13 innings and pull out a dramatic and exciting victory.

I can't win... but at least they did... apparently.

Quite a few guys/items to touch on here, so we'll go one-by-one.

Esmil Rogers: Every start is the same pattern. Bad first inning, recovers in the second and third, and then tires/struggles in the middle innings. But there is slight progression in that he's able to go over 100 pitches now with consistency, and that's allowing him to work through his mid-game struggles and in this case pitch through the sixth. That's a big plus for a tired bullpen.

Also, the final numbers are rarely pretty, but they aren't disastrous either. To me he's not an awful #5 in the NL West as it currently stands. He's not nearly as solid there as Jason Hammel was at his best, but he's passable. And I'd still like to see him take his regular turn in the rotation the rest of the season so we can see if he's a serious contender for the same role next season.

Eric Young Jr.: Best game of his major league career to date. I've been meaning to say I've been impressed with his improved defense even before today, but it sounds like he really turned heads tonight with a couple outstanding plays. Oh, and he also reached base four times and swiped three bags.

Awesome game. Now build on it!

Dexter Fowler: Another clutch basehit. His overall game is hit or miss right now, which is better than mostly miss early in the season. But there's no denying he's had 4-5 of the more important hits on the year. And a few more that broke up no-hit bids.

Todd Helton: Happy birthday to the Toddfather! Sorry we didn't have a gift for you, but thank you for that incredible 15-pitch at-bat and resulting RBI double. That's just special hitting. And a home run, too. That's how you celebrate in style.

The Bullpen: With the exception of Matt Reynolds, who allowed two home runs to bad players in the 12th, the bullpen was outstanding. Matt Belisle (solid), Rex Brothers (nasty), Rafael Betancourt (on fire), Josh Roenicke (still perfect), and J.C. Romero (win!) all contributed to the victory in a big way.

Say what you will about O'Dowd's misfires building the bench, the work he's done building this bullpen (including depth in the minors that's helping now) has been excellent.

Final thought

To reiterate, I didn't see any of this take place live. Please correct me or inform me if I missed on something.

Update: Dexter Fowler did make a poor decision diving for Trent Oeltjen's hit that ended up being an inside-the-park homer, so that takes some heat off Matt Reynolds.But he still allowed a legit home run Aaron Miles. That's almost inexcusable. 

Now, tomorrow's Sunday of course, so all trends point to them forgetting how to play baseball again. Is this the Sunday they shock us? Are the Dodgers the right opponent at the right time? We''ll answer those questions in 24 hours.