Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Rock Solid Recap: A Mixed Bag For Smith

Brewers 7, Rockies 5

Not exactly the debut Greg Smith or the Rockies were looking for.

I was hoping we'd see Smith come out aggressive. Attacking hitters. Looking to establish himself right off the bat.   Instead, he set a bad tone early by getting up 0-2 on Rickie Weeks, only to tiptoe around him with the next four.  After retiring Carlos Gomez and Ryan Braun, he nibbled again and walked Prince Fielder.  That allowed one bad mistake to Casey McGehee to cost him three runs.

When anybody mentions limiting the traffic, that's exactly what they mean.  Two free runs just along for the ride.

He also used up 34 bullets in that first inning.  That's always a guarantee for a short night.

Running Thoughts: Smith vs Wolf

What can I say, I'm excited to Greg Smith get the ball tonight. He should be doing so with far less pressure than had the Rockies lost their opener. 0-2 isn't the end of the world ever of course, but no one wants it.

He'll see a right-handed dominant order from the Crew tonight. I'll be focusing mostly on how he approaches and handles the top of the Brewers order -- Rickie Weeks, Carlos Gomez and Ryan Braun. Keeping them in check will go a long ways towards keeping his team in the game. I'm hoping for six innings and two runs.

Pre-game notes

  • Dexter Fowler is the only change in the lineup tonight.  
1st Inning
  • You could boil an egg on Carlos Gonzalez right now.  5-for-6 to open the season.  He ends up coming around on a Todd Helton single to give the Rockies a 1-0 lead.  
  • Brad Hawpe is overmatched by Randy Wolf on three pitches.  Sure hope we see more of Spilborghs against lefties.  Tomorrow would be a good time to start that trend.    
  • Smith jumped out 0-2 on Rickie Weeks and then start nibbling away.  Ends up walking him and wasting four bullets.  Have to be more aggressive than that.  
  • More aggressive he was with Braun, impressively striking him out with the runner at third.  
  • Smith then turns around and walks Fielder, a guy he should attack, and serves up a 3-run homer to Casey McGehee.  
  • 34 pitch first inning for Smith.  That about says it all.  
  • 3-1 Brewers.

NL West Recap: What Was Joe Torre Thinking?

Pirates 11, Dodgers 5

A couple things about this game.

-- The Dodgers got what they deserved for naming Vicente Padilla their Opening Day starter. What the hell did Joe Torre expect to happen? When you have a Clayton Kershaw and a Chad Billingsley at your disposal, I don't know why you'd ever pass them for Padilla. Weird decision.

-- The Pirates can really rake. It's far from a complete, all-star filled lineup, but there aren't many holes here. Garrett Jones is a nice anchor in the #3 spot. He has power to all fields, as he proudly displayed in the opener. Obviously Andrew McCutchen is a special type player, and Jeff Clement should be good, too.