Nationals 4, Rockies 1 (boxscore)
Yes, a real Recrap this time.
Saturday was a pretty hectic day around these parts with the weather and my duties over at Big League Stew getting most of my attention. Admittedly only got to see bits and pieces of another Rockies game this week, which kinda sticks, but doesn't really stink when you examine what happened.
Anyway, we'll keep things relatively short since I don't feel like going back and rewatching the part I saw and the other I've read about.
What Went Wrong/Turning Point/The Usual
The Rockies would end up with four errors on the afternoon (two each in the 6th and 7th innings). The first came on yet another errand throw by Wilin Rosario, who now has NINE E-2's on the season. His led directly to a run as you see here. Josh Roenicke then followed up with this throwing error on a pick-off attempt, allowing Ryan Zimmerman to walk home.
Just maddening blunders that expose a complete lack of team wide fundamentals. And it's tough enough to overcome one of those, when you start compounding them and stacking as they did here, it's impossible.
Also, it's embarrassing.
Jeff Francis' Line: 5 IP, 3 ER, 6 H, 1 BB, 5 K, 77 pitches (49 strikes)
Unfortunately, Francis' ERA has to wear the errors because both runners he allowed to begin the sixth inning reached cleanly. But if you take those away and look beyond the totals this has to be considered another redefined quality outing for Francis, which makes five in a row by my count. Not bad. Not bad at all. Good bargain shopping.
What's Next: Series finale on Sunday begins at a bright and early 11:35, and the Rockies will continue their run through the top of the Nationals rotation with a matchup against Jordan Zimmerman (5-6, 2.70).
How will they counter?
Well, it's not Josh Outman, so that's good!
It is, however, Jeremy Guthrie (3-8, 6.28).
Final Thoughts: I focus a lot of the pitching in these Recraps. I should point out that the offense, aside from Tyler Colvin and Dexter Fowler (three hits), has done little to take the pressure off the pitching on this road trip. Granted, they've gone up against three consecutive All-Stars in Lance Lynn, Stephen Strasburg and Gio Gonzalez, but they have to figure out ways to scratch out that extra run or two when they're struggling or facing tough competition to make it a different (winnable) game.
THEY have to be team that gets those difference-making runs. THEY cannot afford to be the team that doesn't get those difference-making runs, while also giving away difference-making runs. It would be nice if they could make that a point of emphasis down the stretch here, just so they're prepared and capable of being a team that can compete next season.