Saturday, June 12, 2010

Rock Solid Recap: Second In Command

As of this moment, Ubaldo Jimenez is no longer the hottest Rockies starting pitcher.  That title now belongs to Jason Hammel.

I mean, all you have to do is look at the ERA comparison since we restarted the season yesterday to figure that out: Hammel 0.00, Jimenez 4.50.  It's a no contest.

For real though...

Now that he's completely healthy from the groin issue (which is never minor), Hammel has turned the corner.  That's not to say he's going to start rivaling Jimenez in the CY Young race, but I think it's safe to view him as more than a solid bottom of the rotation pitcher.  He's moving up the ladder, and in terms of the Rockies current rotation, he's the deputy to Ubaldo's sheriff.

Now we just need 1 1/2 of Aaron Cook, Jeff Francis, Jorge De La Rosa and Jhoulys Chacin to step.  It can a whole Cook and a half a Francis.  A Francis and a half Cook/De La Rosa.  Maybe 1/2 of three.  We just need a little something more from the bottom 3/5ths.  Not a lot more, just a little something.

Rockies 1, Blue Jays 0

Winning Player: Jason Hammel

Eight innings of shutout baseball.  Great command of all pitches.  Terrific rhythm and pacing.  Efficiency.  All the ingredients of a pitching gem.

By the way, in addition to the pitching, he scored the game's only run.  He did so with some good baserunning, moving first-to-third on a Helton single to left, and then scoring on a CarGo sac fly.

Yes, clearly the groin issue is behind him.

He also sacrificed successfully and gave his offense a chance to add on late.  No question he was the best player on the field.

The Offense 

Was what it was.  They didn't execute moving runners over about 75% of the time.  One time Todd Helton tried to catch Toronto napping.  That didn't work out (Highlight).  Then there was the time Rich Dauer tried to catch Toronto napping.  That didn't work either (Highlight).

Still a long, long, long, long way to go here.

Clint Barmes

I wonder when Travis Lay (@RockiesExaminer) will write another article telling us his "defensive metrics" suggest Clint Barmes has lost range.

Clint Barmes definitely has range.  (Highlight)

You know, if Todd Helton has no more need for his contact lenses... oh nevermind.  Not worth it.

Tomorrow is a "Get Greedy Sunday" as the Rockies look to sweep Toronto ahead of a trip to Minnesota.  The pitching matchup features Jeff Francis vs. Jesse Litsch.

Litsch is making his first start since Tommy John surgery exactly one year ago.  I'm going to go on a limb and predict the two week (14 day) Taco Bell drought ends tomorrow.

I'm also going to predict it'll have to end, because I don't like how Francis matches up with Toronto's right-handed power.  I almost wish Tracy could push Francis back to the Minnesota series so he can attack a mostly left-handed Twin lineup.

We'll see how things play out.