Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Rock Solid Recap: I Like Angry Rockies

I wonder what that bag of wind Jon Miller thinks of the Rockies offense so far in Florida.

But the bigger story tonight is Jeff Francis.

I've been on Francis a lot after his past three starts. Let's be honest... they weren't good. They weren't average. They weren't even bad. They were just plain awful, bordering on disastrous.

I thought the matchup tonight against Florida wasn't going to provide the right opportunity for him to right the ship. No way. Way too much right-handed power for him to handle.


Francis not only handled those fish, he handled them with relative ease. He was confident. He was in command from beginning to end. He was in attack mode with no lead and carried that on with a 10 run lead. It really was a masterpiece we're used to seeing with Jeff when he's on his game.

The Rockies needed a great effort from him. He provided the effort, while sending a clear cut message that he's not done just yet.

Message received... but I'm still filing in my yellow folder for caution. Once the innings start piling up again without an all-star break in the middle, will he be able to sustain the effectiveness? That's the next bridge he'll need to cross when it comes.


Crredit to Jim Tracy when it's due. He put the right lineup together tonight.

I'll never complain when Melvin Mora is in the lineup... unless he's at second base. The guy is a professional hitter and he once again proved that tonight (3-for-5, HR, 2B, 5 RBI).

We know his defensive skills are pretty much limited to 3B, but he did have a good showing for himself in LF tonight. Let's keep one thing in mind on that though. LF in Sunlife Stadium is one of the easier outfield positions to play in the league. Not a whole lot of ground out there to cover.

Everyone else: Amazingly, despite the 10 runs, no other Rockie collected a multi-hit game tonight. That means the offense featured balance, timely hitting, and a willingness to take a walk. The Rockies collected six of those.

Now if we can only see more of all the above on a consistent basis going forward, the offense won't be an issue.

Of course they won't face Nate Robertson again either... dammit.

Chris Iannetta

Another right button pushed by Tracy was starting Chris Iannetta. Iannetta caught his second shutout in three days. Think about that.  A month ago he couldn't get out of his own way behind the plate, now he's about to seriously challenge Miguel Olivo for playing time.

Good for Chris Iannetta.

I've always felt very strongly about his talent, much the same way I feel about Franklin Morales' talent.  It's just a matter of keeping his head on straight. Not allowing the mental grind to get the best of him.  It's clearly not right now.   Time will now tell if he's able to keep the focus and the confidence going.  I'm definitely pulling for him.


Jason Hammel vs Ricky Nolasco

A couple of pretty similar pitches on the hill in that one.  I'll take my chances with Jason the way he's throwing the ball lately.  Get him 5-6 runs and you should feel pretty good.

Lineup Card: Rockies @ Marlins

Is the wind blowing out to right again?  If so, give me a bat.  I think I could park one about 5-10 row ups those bleachers myself.

Rockies Lineup (50-42)

  • CF  Fowler
  • 2B  Herrera
  • LF  Mora
  • RF  Spilborghs
  • C    Iannetta
  • 1B  Eldred
  • 3B  Stewart
  • SS  Barmes
  • P    Francis
Gonzalez sits with a bruised finger.  He needs to catch his breath and slow his heart rate down anyway.  Good day for that against a lefty.  

Mora in LF shouldn't cause too much harm defensively.  LF in Florida doesn't seem like too difficult a task. (Now watch him make three errors)   It'll put a little more pressure on Fowler to cover ground though.  That's not easy because there is more ground in the right-center field area.  

Marlins Lineup (45-47)
  • LF  Bonafacio
  • 3B  Helms
  • SS  Ramirez
  • 2B  Uggla
  • 1B  Cantu
  • CF  Ross
  • RF  Stanton
  • C    Paulino
  • P    Robertson
Lots of luck to Jeff Francis maneuvering himself around this lineup 2-8.