Phillies 5, Rockies 1 (boxscore)
What Went Wrong: Looks like I picked another good (Sun)day to miss a game. The Rockies were again mystified and dominated by Cole Hamels, which is understandable. He's a motivated pitcher right now and he's also among the most talented in either league. It's not like it's a random shutout by Jeff Suppan or Chris Capuano, so that's fine. It happens.
Unfortunately, though, Hamels may soon be a fixture in the National League West (assuming the Dodgers trade for him or sign him in the offseason, which is heavily rumored), so hopefully they figured a few things out in the process of being stifled.
Get in that video room.
Drew Pomeranz's Line: 5 IP, 5 ER, 5 H, 2 BB, 5 K, 1 HR, 80 pitches (49 strikes)
A step back for Pomeranz today, but certainly not a big enough step to discourage me. Everything went satisfactory right up until Philadelphia's two-out rally in the 5th. The Jimmy Rollins single, the Shane Victorino walk, and of course the three-run homer by Hunter Pence.
It's the same old, tired, worn out problem the Rockies have had all season — their inability to close out innings. It has to improve. They have to become better finishers, get themselves back in the dugouts quicker and allow their teammates to get off their feet and get comfortable at the plate.
Oh, and allow fewer runs. Also important.
But focusing on Pomeranz primarily, the feeling I get from watching him and listening to/reading his words is that he is very comfortable with his game right now, but also understands there are things to improve on to take those next 4-5 steps in his development. I think Sunday's experience gives him that next new thing to focus on, so it'll be interesting to see how he attacks it and comes back his next time out.
Turning Point: We just talked about it. The Hunter Pence home run moves a 2-0 game to a 5-0 game in those pivotal middle innings. No way the Rockies could recover with Cole Hamels dealing.
What's Next: The Rockies will move on from Philadelphia and welcome in the BEST baseball team from Pennslyvania, Clint Hurdle's Pittsburgh Pirates. Jeff Francis (2-2, 5.19) will get the call for Colorado. Jeff Karstens (2-2, 3.94) is the opposition.
Final Thoughts: Ramon Hernandez comes off the disabled list and immediately becomes the Rockies clean up hitter. Am I missing something here? In this how they're going to go about showcasing Hernandez for a trade? Hey, look, he means so much to us we're going to hit him between Carlos Gonzalez and Michael Cuddyer. Or maybe it's simply because they faced Cliff Lee and Hamels (two dominant left-handers) in his starts.
That's probably it, but it's so funny to me how Jim Tracy handles his catchers. And when I say funny I mean funny like a clown, which is how Jim Tracy manages his lineup.
It was a sin to hit Chris Iannetta above eighth, but Wilin Rosario, Miguel Olivo, whoever else, was more than welcome to hit sixth or seventh. Now Wilin Rosario can't get above seventh, but Hernandez can hit fourth.
Oh well, he's our clown... forever.