Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Rock Solid Recrap: Doubleheader Tuesday ends with a thud

Everybody knows by now the Colorado Rockies have lost starting pitcher Jorge De La Rosa to a completely torn ulnar collateral ligament in his left elbow. The Rockies, De La Rosa and his agent will evaluate the next logical steps on Wednesday, but all signs and symptoms point to Tommy John Surgery and a recovery period starting at 12 months.

*Sad face*

Obviously, this is a terrible loss to the Rockies on several levels. De La Rosa has been their most steady and consistent hurler. He's their lone left-handed starting option, which carries a lot of significance. Not to mention they just locked themselves into a possibly damanging contract with Jorge that should see him exercising an expensive player option come 2013.

But most of all you just feel bad for Jorge. The Rockies brought him in as a guy that was on his way out of the majors if things didn't work out. From there he's worked hard to develop into a rock solid number two option on a contending team. That's a nice leap and a good indication that the character of the player is strong.

So we wish him the best and hope a year from now we're welcoming him back and celebrating a successful return. All the best, Jorge.

Diamondbacks 5, Rockies 2 (boxscore)

-- Jhoulys Chacin was pretty good for the five first frames. Unfortunately, Arizona was able to square him up a bit in that 6th inning when they scored three times on three doubles. Kelly Johnson had one of those doubles. He also homered in the first. The guy is pretty much Arizona's version of Cody Ross or Pedro Feliz back in the day. A serial Rockies killer.

-- Owned by Joe Saunders. Where did this one rank on the scale of awful pitchers tying Rockies hitters in knots? I saw a comparison to Mike Pelfrey. That has to be right up there. But I think Casey Coleman has to top this dubious list.

-- Didn't help that Jim Tracy trotted out a less than inspring lineup in the nightcap. He must have known it too, because he was ready to head home by the 3rd inning.

-- Why did he need to give Jonathan Herrera and Seth Smith a game off. I mean really, it's necessary that Alfredo Amezaga gets his at-bats (hitting LEAD-OFF) and Ryan Spilborghs has to spell Smith against every lefty? The old platoon system isn't working. Time to feature your best players as much as possible.

-- On a positive note, Jason Giambi homered again. Not positive, he also left with a bruised elbow after a HBP.

-- That wraps a discouraging doubleheader Tuesday. A day that felt like it could be a positive turning point, ended up to driving us closer to a rock bottom we hoped we'd already reached. But that's baseball. The game constantly challenges you.

Good teams/players respond.

Lesser teams/players fold.

Lineup Card: 5-24-11 Rockies vs Diamondbacks (Game 2)

If you're looking for Rockies game lineups and you don't feel like searching all over Twitter or waiting for MLB.com to post them, check back to Heaven & Helton about 60-90 minutes before first pitch. They should be here waiting for you. 


Game 1 Recap: Rockies offense lashes out violently


Colorado Rockies (24-22)
  1. 2B Alfredo Amezaga
  2. CF Dexter Fowler
  3. LF Carlos Gonzalez
  4. SS Troy Tulowitzki
  5. 1B Jason Giambi
  6. 3B Ty Wigginton
  7. RF Ryan Spilborgh
  8. C   Jose Morales
  9. P   Jhoulys Chacin
Arizona Diamondbacks (23-24)
  1. LF Ryan Roberts
  2. 2B Kelly Johnson
  3. CF Chris Young
  4. SS Stephen Drew
  5. 1B Xavier Nady
  6. C   Miguel Montero
  7. 3B Sean Burroughs
  8. RF Gerardo Parra
  9. P    Joe Saunders

Rock Solid Recap: Rockies offense lashes out violently

Jim Tracy: "Coors Field will be a bad place for opponents to come." (Denver Post)

For one game anyway, that's no Tracy horseshit.

Rockies 12, Diamondbacks 4 (boxscore)

-- Despite the offensive breakthrough, which was fantastic, the biggest storyline of the afternoon is the soreness in Jorge De La Rosa's elbow. No word at this time what the exact problem is there. All we can do is cross our fingers and hope to hear encouraging news, because that would be a very difficult setback to overcome even for a team's that playing consistently good baseball, which the Rockies are not.

-- I said after Sunday's game that the Rockies offense struggles to create runs. They do, but there's no need to create runs when you're stringing together quality at-bats and putting good swings on baseballs. That's what the Rockies started doing in the 4th inning, and it continued right on through until the end.

-- Carlos Gonzalez started the offense with a solo home run in the 4th. He also finished the offense with a two-run homer in the 7th. In between he drew a walk that loaded the bases and delivered an RBI groundout. That's a beautiful game from your three-hole hitter.

-- Other offensive heroes: Dexter Fowler (two hits, triple, two walks, two runs, two RBI), Seth Smith (home run, double, one run, two RBI), Jose Lopez (two hits), and Chris Iannetta (two hits, walk, two runs).

Damn that Dexter Fowler line was a good one. And I shouldn't forget about Troy Tulowitzki's bases loaded walk. That was a pivotal time in the game, so for Tulo to show that type of patience, and also confidence in the hitters behind him, is good to see.

-- Hats off to Greg Reynolds for his good relief this afternoon. Never easy being forced into duty due to injury, but he gave the Rockies exactly what they needed. Now it seems likely the Rockies will need him to make at least one start this weekend and potentially more depending on De La Rosa and Aaron Cook.

-- Role change: Rafael Betancourt pitched a 1-2-3 7th inning. It appears Matt Lindstrom was due to pitch the 8th, but the Rockies plated five in their half of the seventh so we got Matt Daley instead. Could be a temporary deal, but with how well Lindstrom has thrown, I wouldn't just hand the 8th inning back to Raffy once he figures it out.

-- Overlooked play: Really excellent play by Chris Iannetta fielding the wild pitch ricochet and firing a perfect strike to third to nail Melvin Mora. Definitely some luck involved there, but Iannetta made a nice play. That shut down a potential rally when the Rockies lead was still only 5-3. Big play.

-- That concludes the Game 1 recap. Game 2 recap to come later assuming the weather holds off.

Lineup Card: 5-24-11 Rockies vs Diamondbacks (Game 1)

If you're looking for Rockies game lineups and you don't feel like searching all over Twitter or waiting for MLB.com to post them, check back to Heaven & Helton about 60-90 minutes before first pitch. They should be here waiting for you.


Sunday's Recrap: Some thoughts on a bad baseball weekend


Colorado Rockies (23-22)
  1. 2B Jonathan Herrera
  2. CF Dexter Fowler
  3. LF Carlos Gonzalez
  4. SS Troy Tulowitzki
  5. 1B Todd Helton
  6. RF Seth Smith
  7. 3B Jose Lopez
  8. C  Chris Iannetta
  9. P   Jorge De La Rosa
Jim Tracy sticks with the switch-a-roo at the top. Not sure what it accomplishes but in a way I'm happy to see it again if for no other reason than I thought maybe he did it special for Alfredo Amezaga on Sunday. So that's good to know he doesn't think Amezaga is worth changing the lineup for.

Arizona Diamondbacks (23-23)
  1. SS Willie Bloomquist
  2. 2B Ryan Roberts
  3. RF Justin Upton
  4. CF Chris Young
  5. 1B Xavier Nady
  6. 3B Melvin Mora
  7. LF Gerardo Parra
  8. C  Henry Blanco
  9. P   Josh Collmenter
A win by Arizona in Game 1 and they pass the Rockies in the standings. That's a little nauseating, is it not?