Two more hits (single, triple), another run and another RBI. Started a very difficult double play that helped get Jhoulys Chacin out of a mess. I've said it before, and I'll say it until I'm blue in the face. The Rockies best possible lineup has Herrera batting second or eighth and playing second. If he's not out there opening day, I'll be very disappointed. He's earned it.
Pair of hits, pair of runs and an RBI for Smith out of the three spot. His spring has been quiet but very solid, which is ideal for an established veteran.
And speaking of that, Wigginton is another veteran that's quietly getting his work in and playing solid ball. It's going to be difficult for Jim Tracy to resist putting his name on the lineup card 150 times.
Remember when we nervous about the Rockies left-handed options in the bullpen? Well, things seems to have stabilized nicely. Matt Reynolds is slowly rounding into form with another scoreless inning today. Rex Brothers has been dominant since day one. And Eric Stults pitched two scoreless innings, strengthening his case.
All of the sudden the Rockies may have a tough decision to make for the right reasons.
Defensively I give him credit. He's played very well in the field and provides versatility, but I just wonder what the Rockies can honestly expect or hope for. Especially away from Coors Field.
Then again, it sounds like the Rockies may have some trade possibilities involving Lopez to explore as well. If the Rockies really want to find a creative way to get a guy like Jordan Pacheco on the roster, or clear space for Eric Young, this could be a realistic option. We'll see how things play out.
Chacin was constantly dealing with traffic this afternoon. In this four innings, LA put eight runners on base (five hits, three walks), but Chacin was able to exit without allowing a run.
As Troy Renck described it:
@TroyRenck Chacin MacGyver getting out trouble... By my count he's used everything but chicken wire and duct tape to defuse rallies
Chacin will have one more quick tuneup next week before opening his season on April 3rd against Arizona.
What started as a 4-5 horse race quickly narrowed to just one about a week ago. It was just a matter of the Rockies making it official, and now they have. My congratulations to Esmil.
In related news, the Rockies have apparently informed Greg Reynolds he's a candidate for a bullpen spot. Probably not a real serious one at this point, but I mentioned after his last start that I wouldn't mind seeing the Rockies try that with Reynolds. You obviously want to get something out of your former #2 pick, and it looks more and more like it won't be as a starter.