Sunday, April 22, 2012

Rock Solid Recap: A Rare Sunday Recap!

That's not to say there wasn't some of the usual Sunday crap on display, but the Rockies overcame it! 

Here's how. 

Rockies 4, Brewers 1 (boxscore)

Winning Player: Jeremy Guthrie needed a good outing this afternoon after struggling through his first two starts at Coors Field.

Needless to say, he came through.

Guthrie's Line: 7 IP, 1 ER, 3 H, 3 BB, 2 K, 101 pitches (55 strikes)

The ball-strike ratio wasn't sparkling by any means, nor was his groundball-flyball (7-5), but Guthrie somehow managed to avoid a significant threat all afternoon and notched his second victory of the season.

I'd provide more analysis but I'm not exactly sure how to explain his success today. And sometimes it's better to not over analyze and just accept results. So there they are. Good enough.

Turning Point: Jim Tracy avoided using Matt Belisle in last night's loss. I didn't quite understand the thought process in that situation, but at least it paid off this afternoon as a fresh Belisle was able to clean up the mess — 1st and 2nd, no outs — left by Rex Brothers in the eighth.

And we're not talking about cleaning up at the bottom of Milwaukee's order here. Belisle had Ryan Braun, Aramis Ramirez and Corey Hart staring him down, and he retired all three to keep it a 3-1 game. Just a beautiful piece of pitching to shut down a potential game changing inning.

Highlight of the Afternoon: What more can you say about Michael Cuddyer? The guy has been carrying the Rockies offense since opening day. He was the hero off the bench on Friday night. And then today, again, it's Michael Cuddyer up at the biggest moment in the game and again he comes through with a two-run double.

And even if that wasn't the biggest hit of the game, it would still be worth watching just to see Jason Giambi score from first base on a ball that didn't leave the park.


Srcreengrab of the Game

Marco Scutaro forgets to tag Ryan Braun on a stolen base attempt. (Root Sports)
I can't even comprehend this one. Yet another Rockies mental lapse leads to a gift run for the opposition (Braun scored on a two-out single by Mat Gamel). And there's no excuse for one this silly. I mean come on, tag him. That's it. I don't care if he thought Aramis Ramirez walked, struck out, whatever. Tag him.

It's like Troy Tulowitzki not running out a groundball because he thinks it's foul. Just do what's natural. If you hit the ball, run. If a runner is stealing and you catch the throw, tag him. That's the natural act. Just do it. There's no harm. Do your job. Hope the umpire does his.


And that wasn't the end of Scutaro's... umm... odd day in the field. He also inexplicably cut off a throw from Cuddyer that would have doubled Rickie Weeks off second during the heart-pounding eighth inning. Belisle had his back there. And then he botched a liner in the ninth but recovered to "throw out" Matt Gamel. First base umpire Brian Gorman covered for him on that one.

Perhaps Scutaro will get that day off many were expecting today on Monday night.

What's Next: The Rockies head further east to take on a Pittsburgh Pirates team that's pitching out of their minds but can't hit a lick. The latter certainly bodes well for Jamie Moyer in the opener, and a matchup with familiar foe Kevin Correia may be good for the offense as well.

Now the question is: When will they be playing that opener? Forecasts are calling for a 90% chance of snow in Pittsburgh tomorrow with a high temp of 37. I guess we'll talk to you again on Tuesday at the earliest.

Final Thoughts: Jim Tracy offered an explanation for his Sunday lineups today in the Denver Post. If you haven't already, take a few minutes to absorb the geniusness of our clueless fearless skipper.

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