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DENVER – Patience is indeed a virtue. It has been so far for the Colorado Rockies in 2018, keeping their heads safely above water rather than storming out of the gates early in their high-expectation-season.
And patience was the key for the Rockies in a 5-2 win over the Chicago Cubs at Coors Field on Saturday night, walking seven times and using a huge fifth inning to punch back after being throttled in Game 1 of the series.
It looked for a moment like Friday’s nightmare was going to repeat itself for Colorado when a pair of runs came in on a deep double off the bat of Wilson Contreras in the first. Just like the night before, it was some soft singles that set the stage for the big shot, but unlike the night before, starting pitcher Tyler Anderson would stop the bleeding then and there.
He put up five blank frames after that.
The Rockies southpaw was matched, overmatched even, by Cubs starter Yu Darvish until the Colorado offense suddenly sprung to life in the fifth.
Darvish, who had allowed just one Nolan Arenado single going into the inning, began to struggle with his command, walking Mike Tauchman and Anderson, a pair of hitters whos’ numbers don’t exactly demand you pitch them carefully. DJ LeMahieu got the Rockies on the board, ripping another line drive into the gap but this one couldn’t be caught. The Cubs did a get a break when it hopped over the wall, allowing just one run to score but that would end up inconsequential.
Gerardo Parra followed with a single right back up the middle that swung the score in the Rockies favor, making it 3-2. Then, on the very first pitch he saw, Arenado roped his second straight single to score Parra and move Charlie Blackmon, who had walked, to second. Blackmon scored on a two-strike double that Trevor Story pulled down the left-field line. And when the dust settled, it was 5-2, Rockies.
Arenado also did this to help Anderson keep it clean in the fifth:
Nolan is a menace in the field. pic.twitter.com/mlczMCwcGc
— MLB (@MLB) April 22, 2018
Jake McGee worked a clean seventh with a strikeout and Adam Ottavino induced three straight groundball outs in the eighth.
And Wade Davis worked a 1-2-3 ninth to earn his ninth save of the season, even the series, and improve the Rockies to 12-10 on the season.
Tyler Anderson: 6 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 6 K
Jake McGee: 1 IP, 1 K
Adam Ottavino: 1 IP
Wade Davis: 1 IP
Nolan Arenado: 2-for-4, 1 RBI
Gerardo Parra: 1-for-4, 1 R, 2 RBI
DJ LeMahieu: 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2B
Trevor Story: 1-for-4, 1 RBI, 2B
Charlie Blackmon: 0-for-2, 1 R, 2 BB
Mike Tauchman: 0-for-2, 1 R, 2 BB
The Rockies and Cubs play the rubber match in the series Sunday afternoon. First pitch is at 1:10 Mountain Time. German Marquez looks to continue his strong start going against Jose Quintana who is looking to rebound from one of the shortest outings of his career.