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Colorado Rockies win one, lose one in long day at Coors Field

David Martin Avatar
May 24, 2015


Everyone in Colorado is sick of the rain. Anyone whose job is at Coors Field has to be dreaming of a vacation to the desert.

On Saturday at Coors Field, the Colorado Rockies finished their doubleheader with the San Francisco Giants at 11:52 pm, picking up a victory on the back-end of the twin bill.

The two games couldn’t have been any different. The first was a typical Coors Field game, finishing with a 10-8 Rockies loss in which Colorado had a rally that fell just short in the 9th inning. The second was a Coors Field pitcher’s duel in which David Hale made his case for a spot in the starting rotation.

As the Rockies have become accustom to, both games featured lengthy rain delays. The first game was scheduled for 2 pm with the second one following it at 7 pm. The first one didn’t start until around 3:30 and the second didn’t start until 9. That came on the heels of a night in which the final out wasn’t recorded until about 30 minutes after midnight.

For Rockies fans, good news has been hard to come by. Game two provided a little bit of that. David Hale, making his first start in a Rockies uniform. The right-hander was acquired from the Atlanta Braves in the offseason in a move that, ironically, involved former general manager Dan O’Dowd’s son, Chris.

Hale hurt his oblique in spring training, an injury that often debilitates a pitcher for several months. He worked his way back, and despite poor numbers at Triple-A, he was summonsed to make the start on Saturday night. He didn’t make the Rockies regret that decision. He went 6-2/3 innings, giving up three runs, only two of which were earned, on eight hits. He only struck out two, but by far the most important stat of the night for Hale was one that the Rockies need to make a trend. He didn’t walk a single batter.

Hale might be just what the Rockies have been missing in their rotation. While the young starting pitchers have done a decent job of keeping the Rockies in games, they have really struggled with walks. Tyler Matzek has been sent back to Triple-A, and ultimately completely shut down. However, Eddie Butler and Jordan Lyles have struggled themselves.

Hale wasn’t the only Triple-A call-up who made an impression. Both Brandon Barnes and Ben Paulsen were a huge part of the victory for the Rockies. Barnes went 2-for-4 including a hustle double in the 4th inning that drove in a run and pushed Michael McKenry to third base. McKenry then came home on a Daniel Descalso ground out to second base which gave the Rockies a 2-1 lead. Those two runs were the difference for the Rockies.

In the bottom of the 7th inning, with a runner on 2nd base and lefty Jeremy Affeldt on the mound for the Giants, San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy elected to pass on Nolan Arenado and pitch to recent call-up Ben Paulsen. The left-handed hitting Paulsen didn’t look as intimidated as Bochy was probably hoping he would be. On the first pitch Paulsen poked a ball back up the middle and through to the outfield. The hit scored another run and kept the momentum on the Rockies side.

Those types of contributions are something that the Rockies have been lacking throughout the month of May. The fresh blood in the clubhouse might be something that this team needed. It might be a slightly different perspective that is being added to the team that wasn’t being seen by the guys on the team who were there throughout all of the struggles.

Game one wasn’t fun for the Rockies. Lyles did his job until he injured his big toe. Yohan Flande relieved him and couldn’t keep the Giants at bay.

The Rockies are in the midst of huge struggles. They have to find a way to play better than they have throughout the month of May. However, despite a horrible stretch and continued bad baseball there have been a few rays of sunshine in a cloudy month. There have been some reasons for Rockies fans to have some hope that things will start to get better.

The rain keeps coming down in Denver and the Rockies continue to struggle, but at some point the sunshine will break through. Things might not be where Rockies fans want them to be. The road to that place is going to take more than a year or two to get to. However, outings like Hale provided on Saturday should give fans some reasons to smile.


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