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Nolan Arenado leads Colorado Rockies home run barrage in win over Arizona

David Martin Avatar
June 24, 2015

 

He wasn’t supposed to steal the spotlight this quickly.

Nolan Arenado is quickly becoming the face of the Colorado Rockies franchise, despite Troy Tulowitzki still actively contributing at a near all-star level.

On Tuesday night at Coors Field, the Rockies smashed five home runs in a 10-5 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks, a team that had won five out of the six games that the teams have played against each other going into Tuesday night’s matchup.

With Kyle Kendrick on the mound, owner of a career 6.34 ERA against Arizona in 10 previous appearances throughout his career, the Rockies were going to have to score a ton of runs to have a chance. It didn’t look good early, as Kendrick continued his trend of struggling against Arizona, and frankly, of struggling in a Rockies uniform. He gave up three home runs to the Diamondbacks and quickly had the Rockies in a hole.

The trend throughout June has been for the Rockies to give up a few runs early and for the offense not to be able to overcome the early deficit. It looked to be the case once again with Kendrick on the mound. The three home runs put the total number of home runs given up by the right-hander at 21 for the season. The number is a large number for an entire season, let alone the first two-and-a-half months.

With the Rockies in a horribly familiar position, down 3-0 early, Arenado took things into his own hands. In the 4th inning, he blasted a no-doubt home run to left field to bring the Rockies within a run. In the 5th inning, with the Rockies rallying, Tulowitzki tied the game up with a single up the middle that scored Charlie Blackmon and moved DJ LeMahieu to second.

Arenado stepped to the plate and drilled a Chase Anderson off-speed pitch deep to left-center field, giving the Rockies a 7-4 lead. Suddenly the Rockies were not only on the plus-side of the scoreboard, but they had a big lead and were cruising. If that wasn’t enough, Wilin Rosario joined in on the fun, crushing his own home run, the LeMahieu hit his own. Not to be outdone, Brandon Barnes added his own blast in the bottom of the 8th, giving the Rockies their fifth homer of the night and a huge number on the scoreboard.

The Rockies aren’t going anywhere in 2015. If they can string something together, they will be fortunate to finish in third place in the National League West. However, this isn’t a season where the focus is contention. This is a season in which the Rockies are in search of who will be a contributor as this team figures out how to readjust their mindset and to stop accepting losses.

Arenado has shown that he is going to be a guy who this team can build around. Troy Tulowitzki may be the face of the franchise, and he certainly has earned that, but Nolan Arenado is quickly showing that he deserves to be in that same category. He isn’t just a good player. His 2015 season is showing that he has the capability of being an absolute star in this league.

The Rockies are one of the most up and down teams in the entire league. They have the talent to go out and score 10 runs and erase a bad outing. They are gifted enough to go on a run that makes people think that they are much better than last place in the National League West. However, they also don’t have the depth or the starting pitching to overcome games in which the offense gets shut down. That lends itself to high-highs and low-lows.

While the Rockies look to grow and become a decent team once again, there is no doubt that the franchise has a guy who they can be excited about. Nolan Arenado is a player that looks like will be an all-star for years to come. The Rockies are fortunate enough to be able to ride the Arenado era back into respectability.

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