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Of, by, and for Rockies fans. Every day.



Updated: 2017-06-26T23:42:47-06:00

 



San Francisco Giants 9, Colorado Rockies 2: Rock bottom

2017-06-26T23:42:47-06:00

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Hello darkness, my old friend...

Before we get to the game recap, here’s some Simon and Garfunkel to set the mood.

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In a quarter century of Rockies baseball, there have been some bad teams. Six times they have failed to win 70 games (seven if you count the strike-shortened 1994 season), but none of those teams, not the inaugural team in 1993, not the teams of the Todd and the Toddlers era, not even when they resorted to Project 5183 in 2012, did the Rockies produce a week of baseball as ugly as this one.

During their six-game losing streak, which extended with Monday’s 9-2 loss to the Giants, the Rockies have been outscored 57-17, that’s a run differential of -40. Not only have the Rockies lost six in a row, they have done so by nearly seven runs per game. That is just being uncompetitive.

On Monday, the Rockies were completely uncompetitive against one of the worst teams in the league, the San Francisco Giants. Germán Márquez continued a run of poor starts from the pitching staff, throwing 86 pitches in just four innings of work in which he allowed five runs, all earned, on seven hits, walking a pair and striking out a pair, putting the Rockies in a 5-0 hole.

After two scoreless innings from Antonio Senzatela in his first relief appearance of the season, the Rockies showed some life on offense, putting together four singles in the top of the seventh to cut the lead to 5-2 with one out. However, Giants reliever Hunter Strickland struck out Pat Valaika and, after a walk, got DJ LeMahieu to ground out to end the threat.

The rest of the bullpen was not able to replicate Senzatela’s success, as Chad Qualls gave up a run in the seventh and Jairo Diaz coughed up three in his season debut in the eighth to put the game out of reach.

If this isn’t rock bottom for the 2017 Rockies, I don’t know what is.

The Rockies will look to snap their six-game losing streak Tuesday night in San Francisco, with Jeff Hoffman on the mound against Matt Cain. First pitch is scheduled for 8:15 p.m. Mountain time.




Colorado Rockies, Chicago Cubs trade minor league relievers

2017-06-26T21:11:05-06:00

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Matt Carasiti, Zac Rosscup switch teams.

The Colorado Rockies made their first trade since moving Miguel Castro to the Orioles at the beginning of the season. The Rockies have acquired Zac Rosscup from the Chicago Cubs in exchange for minor league reliever Matt Carasiti.

Rosscup was designated for assignment by the Cubs on June 22 to open up a 40-man roster spot. At the time he was pitching for the Triple-A Iowa Cubs and had a 2.60 ERA over 2723 innings in the minors. He made one appearance for the Chiacgo Cubs this season on May 22 and pitched 23 of an inning.

Rosscup missed all of 2016 due to a shoulder injury that resulted in surgery. In 2015 though he was a part of the Chicago Cubs bullpen and had a lot of success when facing left-handed batters. Right-handed batters had a lot of success against him though. With his extreme L/R splits Rosscup may be an intriguing LOOGY if the Rockies felt like they needed to add a specialist to a bullpen that already has three left-handed relievers.

Carasiti rose quickly from Double-A to the big-league squad last season in part due to the Rockies’ bullpen woes. Despite his success in the minors, his lack of control was exposed in the majors. For the Rockies last season, Carasiti had a stellar 9.8 K/9 but also had a 6.3 BB/9 and allowed 14.4 H/9. After being non-tendered in the offseason, Carasiti re-signed with the Rockies on a minor-league deal. While the Triple-A stats have been impressive this season, his lack of command was still a big concern.

Because Rosscup was on the Cubs 40-man roster before being DFA’d he will now have to occupy a spot on the Rockies 40-man roster. However, the Rockies have had only had 39 players on the 40-man roster since removing Stephen Cardullo from it and will not need to make an additional move to make room for Rosscup.




Colorado Rockies Game No. 79 Thread: Germán Márquez vs. Jeff Samardzija

2017-06-26T19:10:01-06:00

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Rockies look to get back on track against the Giants.

After a tough week of games against the Dodgers and Diamondbacks that resulted in a five-game losing streak, the Rockies will take a significant step down in the level of competition as they take on the last place Giants.

Germán Márquez gets the start for the Rockies against San Francisco’s Jeff Samardzija.

Lineups

TV: ROOT Sports (local), ESPN (national)
Radio: 850 KOA
MLB.com Gameday link




Rockies place Carlos González and Tyler Anderson on DL, activate Chad Qualls and call up Jairo Díaz

2017-06-26T16:49:04-06:00

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Rockies added some much needed reinforcements to the bullpen.

The Rockies have placed Tyler Anderson and Carlos González on the 10-day disabled list, Patrick Saunders reports. Their roster spots will be filled by right-handed relievers Jairo Díaz and Chad Qualls. Díaz is getting called up from Triple-A Albuquerque, while Qualls is being reinstated from the disabled list.

The Rockies placed Anderson on the disabled list in early June due to inflammation in his left knee. They activated him early last week. Anderson made a one-inning relief appearance last Thursday, and he started Sunday’s game against the Dodgers. Bud Black and the Rockies training staff decided to remove Anderson from the game in the third inning after he seemed to re-aggravate his left knee.

González hasn’t played since last Thursday while dealing with what the team has described as a sore shoulder. That’s probably true. It’s also true that CarGo is in the midst of a miserable season and that some time off could do him well.

Díaz missed all of the 2016 season recovering from Tommy John surgery, and he also missed some time earlier this year for personal reasons. His presence could give the Rockies bullpen the boost it needs. Qualls will join Díaz in the bullpen. The Rockies placed the 38-year-old on the disabled list on June 16 due to back spasms.

With these additions, the Rockies now have a nine-man bullpen, which should help the overworked squad for a little while at least. But as a trade off, the Rockies are reduced to a three-man bench. Expect additional moves soon to clear things up.




Colorado Rockies minor-league affiliates go 1-5 in rough day for pitching

2017-06-26T11:00:02-06:00

Prospect news and game results from the Rockies minor league affiliates from Sunday, June 25, 2017. In a day the Major League club suffered one of it’s most embarrassing losses in 2017, the minor league affiliates couldn’t find their pitching groove. In the six minor league games across the Rockies farm, the Rockies minor clubs lost five of them. In all but one game (a Boise 3-1 loss) the pitching gave up five or more runs. The Isotopes were the lone winners on Sunday, exploding for 12 runs and pushing themselves back over .500 on the season. The ‘Topes got offensive production from up and down the lineup with eight players recording an RBI. Ryan McMahon added an RBI double and kept his average over .420 with the 1-for-4 night. Asheville, Lancaster, Hartford, and Grand Junction saw their pitching staffs get blown apart on Sunday. Asheville had the best day only allowing seven runs. Score and highlights from the affiliates are below: Triple-A: Albuquerque 12, El Paso 5 Ryan McMahon (no. 7 PuRP): 1-4, 2B, R, RBIJordan Patterson (no. 13 PuRP): 1-3, BB, 2 R, RBIHarrison Musgrave (no. 25 PuRP): 6 IP, 5 ER, 5 H, 4 BB, 2KSam Moll (no. 28 PuRP): 1 IP, 0 ER, 0 H, KJerry Vasto: 1 IP, 0 ER, 0 H, BB Carlos Estevez: 1 IP, 0 ER, 0 H, K Double-A: Altoona 11, Hartford 9 Brendan Rodgers (no. 1 PuRP): 0-1Brian Mundell (HM PuRP): 0-1Jack Wynkoop (HM PuRP): 4 1/3 IP, 9 ER, 8 H, 2 BB, KDrew Weeks: 2-3, HR, R, 2 RBI High-A: Rancho Cucamonga 8, Lancaster 3 Garrett Hampson (no. 22 PuRP): 0-4Sam Hilliard: 2-4, CSRoberto Ramos: 1-3, BBCraig Schlitter: 5 1/3 IP, 2 ER, 7 H, 3 BB, 3K Low-A: Rome 7, Asheville 2 Jacob Bosiokovic: 2-4, HR, R, RBITaylor Snyder: 1-4, HR, R, RBIAntonio Santos: 2 IP, 5 R, 2 ER, 6 H, 0 BB, 2 K Short Season-A: Hillsboro 3, Boise 1 Daniel Jipping: 1-3, HR, R, RBIKeinter Olivares: 4 2/3 IP, 2 R, 0 ER, 7 H, 3K, 1 BB Rookie: Idaho Falls 13, Grand Junction 4 Pedro Gonzalez (no. 16 PuRP): 1-4, BBHidekel Gonzalez: 1-4, Casey Golden: 1-4, HR, R, 2 RBI Dominican Summer League: DSL Rockies - Off Day ★ ★ ★ Monday Probables Triple-A Albuquerque: Carpenter @ Fresno, 8:05 MT Double-A Hartford: French (no. 26 PuRP) @ Binghamton, 5:05 MT High-A Lancaster: Lambert (no. 11 PuRP) @ Inland Empire, 8:05 MT Low-A Asheville: Requena @ Greenville, 5:05 MT Short Season-A Boise: Valek @ Salem-Keizer, 7:15 MT Rookie Level Grand Junction: N/A @ Idaho Falls, 7:15 MT Dominican Summer League Rockies: N/A @ DSL Angels, 8:30 AM MT [...]



These playoff teams show Rockies’ slump is no reason to panic

2017-06-26T10:00:05-06:00

Despite recent struggles, the Rockies are still in good position for the remainder of the season I don’t know if you’ve heard, but the Rockies have lost five straight games. It’s always tough to watch stretches like this, but it doesn’t mean the Rockies are finished. How bad is their current stretch? In their last fourteen games they are 6-8 and they have lost five straight to teams they are battling for the division title by a combined score of 48-15. For the first time all season they are more than one game out of the division lead, sitting 4.5 games back of the Dodgers. This has been a tough portion of the schedule and a little slump doesn’t spell doom and gloom. Let’s take a look at some recent playoff teams and see how the current Rockies slump compares to some of the worst suffered by others. 2016 Chicago Cubs We all know the Cubs went on to win the 2016 World Series so let’s start there and look at their lowest point of the season. The Cubs had a twenty-game stretch last year from June 20 to July 9 in which they went 5-15. Pitching was largely to blame for the Cubs woes. From the Chicago Sun-Times: “But like most things in baseball, this skid starts with starting pitching—with the Cubs’ best-in-baseball starting rotation going 3-10 with a 5.70 ERA during that 19-game stretch, with 11 starts of less than six innings.” The twenty-game skid for the Cubs included sweeps against the Mets and Cardinals, both teams that would eventually make the playoffs. Good teams are going to lose to other good teams and the Rockies are no exception. 2015 Houston Astros The Astros won 87 games and got into the playoff as a Wild Card team in 2015, taking the eventual champion Royals to a deciding fifth game in the ALDS. At their low point, they went 5-11 over sixteen games from May 25-June 10. The stretch included a seven-game losing streak in which they were swept by the White Sox and Blue Jays in back-to-back series. From The Crawfish Boxes: “Just like Houston can't hit three homers in every game, the bullpen can't shutout the opponent every night. However, the hitting and bullpen pitching have struggled in sync during Houston's roughest patch of 2015. As for the part of the team that many agree needs upgrading: Houston's starters pitched 19 innings in three games vs. Chicago and allowed five runs.” We have seen the bullpen and starting rotation struggle mightily during this stretch while the offense hasn’t been able to pick them up. Just like with Houston in 2015, everyone is getting cold at the same time and that makes for ugly baseball games to watch. Still, the Astros hit their stride later in the season and still managed to make the playoffs a year earlier than most expected them to. 2014 San Francisco Giants The Giants finished 2014 with 88 wins and a World Series win. However, they had an awful stretch starting on June 9 all the way through the 4th of July. They went 5-18 in their 23 games in a rude awakening from their hot start to the season. From The Mercury News: [The Giants] remain on top of the division — just barely — thanks to two spectacular months. With the Reds again on the other side of the field, though, the Giants have looked nothing like a contending team this series. This is about as bad as it can get for an eventual playoff team and what the Rockies are dealing with now is nothing compared to the Giants’ woes. The theme in the Giants slump was their inability to hit in any and every situation. They scored over four runs in a game just five times during the slump but went on to win a Championship because even years or something. ★ ★ ★ All of these slumps were tough to get through and seemed like the end of the season. Journalists, bloggers, and fans were quick to write off their teams, as I have heard over and over again about the Rockies. The rotation, bullpen, and lineup have gone cold simultaneously, but their current slu[...]



MLB All-Star Game 2017: Only vote for two Colorado Rockies players

2017-06-26T09:00:02-06:00

The Rational Rockies Fan’s guide to All-Star voting. By now, you’ve surely been exposed to various hashtag vote campaigns for this year’s All-Star game. Maybe they’ve persuaded you to make your voice heard in a certain way. Maybe you need to do a little more research and wait until the last moment to vote (Thursday night at 9:59 p.m. MT). If you’ve been waiting around for a blogger to provide a guide about how to vote, do I ever have the post for you. (It’s this one.) This is the Rational Rockies Fan’s guide to All-Star voting. Using numerical and emotional measures, I shall advise you how to cast your votes. I will not recommend that you vote for all Rockies players wily-nily, because that would be what the Irrational Rockies Fan does. Instead, we’ll go down the list of positions and figure out which Rockies are truly deserving of benefiting from your God-given right to make your voice known five times a day and up to 35 times to determine who will play the first few innings of the the Esurance All-Star Game presented by MasterCard. I’m crying stars and stripes just thinking about it. Catcher This one’s easy. Tony Wolters is the Rockies’ catcher listed on the ballot, and no, you should not vote for him. I love TFW just as much as the next fan, and he’s having a good year. His strong approach at the plate has led to an on-base percentage near .400. But he has no power at all, and his defense seems to have regressed from the bar he set in 2016. Wolters is just nowhere close to the player for whom you should caset at least half of your votes: Buster Posey. First base I’m gonna make somebody mad here. Mark Reynolds is having a dynamite season and I’m sure as hell glad the Rockies opted to sign Reynolds instead of Chris Carter, like I was advocating. In a vacuum, Reynolds surely deserves to be on the All-Star team. In that same vacuum, he deserves to get all of your votes. But a vacuum live we do not. We live in a world where sentences as terrible as the one preceding this one are possible. And we live in a world where Paul Goldschmidt is slugging .606, a world where that mark isn’t even that close to Ryan Zimmerman’s .657, and a world where Joey Votto’s .412 on-base percentage is somehow just second best among NL first baseman. In this world, Mark Reynolds has the fourth best batting average among qualified NL first baseman, the fifth best on-base percentage, and the seventh best slugging percentage. And that’s before adjusting for Coors Field. You should absolutely NOT write in Reynolds for the All-Star Game. Instead, flip a coin for Goldschmidt or Zimmerman. Second base As opposed to the first two positions, Rockies’ second baseman D.J. LeMahieu registers in the voting here. He’s currently in third place, behind Daniel Murphy and Javier Báez. We can dismiss Báez’s presence here as a product of Cubs fans stuffing the ballot. Does that help LeMahieu’s case? Even if Daniel Murphy wasn’t hitting .342/.393/.576 it would not. LeMahieu is hitting .304 with a quite good .364 on-base percentage, but the gap power he had last year has all but disappeared. That severely hurts his overall offensive profile. He’s still a quality defender, but we’re not really close to needing that tiebreaker. Your vote should go to Murphy, but in the event that you disagree, Josh Harrison would be a fine selection, as would Brandon Drury of the Diamondbacks, or even Brandon Phillips. Don’t vote DJ. Third base Nolan Arenado’s the best all around third baseman in the National League, and possibly all of baseball, so just vote for him. Shortstop Not only has Trevor Story missed a portion of the season, but he was in a terrible slump before landing on the disabled list. He’s improved since returning, but Story still hasn’t lifted his season line at the plate back to average. He’s walking more than he did last year,[...]



Rockies reliever Adam Ottavino threw 48 pitches, and it was not good

2017-06-26T08:00:06-06:00

The decision to leave Ottavino in was inexplicable. I’m sitting here after one of the most frustrating losses I’ve ever watched. Look at this stupid win probability graph: Fangraphs This is actually one of the rare times when a win probability graph doesn’t convey even half of the awfulness of the experience. Adam Ottavino, literally the Rockies’ only good relief pitcher from 2015-2016, experienced what is easily the worst meltdown of the season, allowing three runs on two wild pitches during one at bat, and then five more runs the following inning on two more wild pitches, two walks, two doubles, and Cody Bellinger’s second home run of the game. It’s no secret that Ottavino has been extremely ineffective this year. He has now walked just over 15 percent of the batters he’s faced, third worst among relievers. The six earned runs today bumped his ERA up near 5.00, essentially matching his FIP. His seven wild pitches are tied for the most in baseball (again among relievers). All of that said, I still can’t get it out of my mind that the thing that bothered me most about this entire stupid game is this number: 48 That’s the number of pitches that Ottavino threw tonight. Here’s another graph, and this one is more mind-boggling than the last. It shows the number of pitches Ottavino’s thrown per appearance since 2014: Brooks Baseball That huge spike at the right hand corner was from yesterday. Sunday was just the first time since 2014 that Ottavino had even thrown more than 30 pitches in a game, and he threw nearly 50. Now, I have had essentially nothing but positive things to say about how Bud Black has managed the Rockies this year. Not that my praise would or ought to mean anything to him, coming from a certified Denizen of Mom’s Basement. So what I’m about to say is less about criticizing Black, a professional doing a job that I could never ever begin to contemplate doing, and more about asking the question: did he really need to let Ottavino wear this one? I can understand the circumstances. The bullpen has been perpetually overworked for a while, and with the game out of hand (and under the control of Kenley Jansen), it makes perfect sense to me to hope to get an extra out or two from Ottavino. Furthermore, Black has seemed to adopt a philosophy of “you made the mess, now you clean it up,” especially in games that are essentially over. He’s been praised for that approach, and I think in many cases rightly. I do think that yesterday, he may have gone too far. Ottavino has been wild all year, but four wild pitches is insane. He was clearly not able to get the ball over the plate, or even near it. In a season where Ottavino has rarely had much control, he had less than ever before. I highly doubt that Bud Black was trying to “teach a lesson” to Ottavino, so don’t think I’m headed that direction. No, I’m more worried about the idea of a pitcher being asked to essentially double his usual peak workload, in a game that was statistically over, just under a year removed from returning from major surgery, on the worst day of his career. To Adam’s credit, he had all the right things to say after the game: “You can call it what you want, it was pathetic,” Ottavino said. “I have to do better.” “I would have pitched until my arm fell off,” Ottavino said. I have no doubt of the truth of that last quote, which is part of my concern. In situations like this, I do believe it is the manager’s job to protect his players from breaking themselves. He was clearly reaching his limits, as you can see from his velocity chart. Notice how his fastball velocity was tailing off by ~2-3 mph towards the end: Brooks Baseball To roll back around to my disclaimers here: I don’t really have a clue about the situation. I’m a fan fro[...]