Saturday, May 5, 2012

Rock Solid Recrap: Colorado Springs Shuttle Gaining Occupants

Braves 9, Rockies 8 in 11 innings (boxscore) 

What Went Wrong: Staked to a 5-0 lead in the 1st inning, Guillermo Moscoso managed to give it all back, plus one, in less than five innings of work.

Guillermo Moscoso's Line: 4 1/3, 6 ER, 7 H, 3 BB (felt like 30), 5 K, 1 HR, 83 pitches (43 strikes)

Needless to say he did not take advantage of his second start with this awful line, and will soon be heading south to Colorado Springs to join Jhoulys Chacin. Not a lot more needs to be said about it. Thanks for playing, Guillermo. 

Oh, wait, don't leave just yet. Make some room for Edgmer Escalona on the Colorado Springs Shuttle. The Rockies right-handed reliever — who always seems to find himself pitching in a critical situation —took his first official loss of the year after allowing the game-winning two-run homer to Eric Hinske in the 11th. He now sports a 10.13 ERA in six appearances.

Matt Reynolds (he can stay) was also less than stellar in relief of Moscoso (1 2/3, 4 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 2 K). Had he been able to shut down Atlanta's rally in the 5th, or even just pitched a clean 6th, it could have been the turning point the Rockies needed to get this win.


Turning Point #1: Trailing 5-2, Michael Bourn lays down a bunt with one out in the 5th inning. Originally it's ruled fair, with Ramon Hernandez picking the ball up and tagging Bourn out. After a discussion with the rest of his umpiring crew (or maybe it just took three minutes to register), Tim McClelland then changes his call to a foul ball. Bourn's at-bat continues, he singles, Moscoso, who was walking the razor's edge without any assistance, promptly implodes. Braves leave the inning leading 6-5. 

Good call or not, which I think it was, you just can't let an inning get away like that. 

Turning Point #2 The Rockies had the man they wanted at the plate with the game on the line in the 9th. He was also the guy Atlanta wanted at the plate in that spot, because they passed on Troy Tulowitzki to get to him. That guy was Todd Helton, who stepped in against one of the toughest left-handers in the game, Eric O'Flaherty, and went down swinging on a 3-2 pitch with the winner 90 feet away.

Truly a rare moment when Todd Helton is involved in a turning point that doesn't lead to handshakes for Colorado.

Not that he didn't try to turn the game back around with his defense...

Highlights of the Night: The Rockies flashed some really nice leather in this game, especially in the pressure-packed late innings. With that, we honor Michael Cuddyer's arm, Todd Helton's Todd Heltonness, and Wilin Rosario's third base debut (it went better than anyone could have dreamed).

Screengrabs of the Game
Moscoso was in the dugout by the time McClelland did his strikeout mechanic.
Troy Tulowitzki's haircut.
And the slightly differing opinions that followed. 
Joel Klatt loves the camera more than it loves him. 
What's Next: Game two of the weekend set is scheduled for 6:10 MT Saturday night. Jamie Moyer will take the ball for Colorado looking for his second win. 24-year-old left-hander Mike Minor (2-2, 4.68) is scheduled for Atlanta. Also, it's worth noting that this game will be broadcast on MLB Network for those outside Colorado who may not have an MLB.TV or Extra Inning subscription or are traveling.

Final Thoughts: I'm telling you again, I'm not going to make it past July 4th at this rate. These games are absolute killers, especially when the Rockies end up on the wrong side of the W-L column. Hopefully they can start sprinkling in a few basic 5-2 wins over the next week or so to help improve my life expectancy.

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