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Rusin better as Colorado Rockies break out the bats on Sunday

David Martin Avatar
June 22, 2015


Baseball is a game that a father teaches his son. It’s fitting that Father’s Day falls in the summer, when baseball can be watched by those dads. On Sunday, the Colorado Rockies rewarded their faithful fans with an old-school Coors Field victory.

The home team walked away with a 10-4 win over the struggling Milwaukee Brewers. The win gave the Rockies a series victory and allowed them to go into their day off with a little bit of momentum on their side and a couple of wins to wipe the memories of an awful road trip away.

Chris Rusin, the Rockies starter who was never really supposed to contribute in 2015, was much better than his previous two starts. He went six innings, giving up three runs on seven hit. He struck out a pair and didn’t allow any free passes. It was a step in the right direction for Rusin, and anyone who hopes that the Rockies can make 2015 a respectable season.

It was a game that Rockies fans have been hoping to see, and need to see more of in the following months. The offense looked like it was designed to look. Top to bottom, no one was fooled by Brewer’s starter Matt Garza, who probably is thinking twice about signing that long-term deal with a Milwaukee team that doesn’t look like it has much of a chance to succeed in the next few seasons. Every Rockies starter besides Carlos Gonzalez, who left with a hand injury, recorded a hit. Even Brandon Barnes, who replaced CarGo, got in on the action. Catcher Nick Hundley went 4-f0r-4 with two doubles. Nolan Arenado hit a solo home run and Troy Tulowitzki recorded two hits and four RBIs. It was the kind of offensive performance that the Rockies needed throughout their road trip.

Rusin might not be a guy who the Rockies are depending on long-term. If the front office had an honest conversation with it’s fans, it would be told that Rusin is probably a stop-gap pitcher. He wasn’t brought in to be a huge contributor, but the fact that the first few times he climbed the mound in a big league uniform he pitched extremely well gave the Rockies a reason to believe that he might be able to give them a pitcher who can at least be depended on for the time being.

If every Rockies starter could go out and do what Rusin did on Sunday, a quality start, the Rockies probably wouldn’t be in the basement of the National League West. The Rockies need someone who they can depend on so that the offense can go to the plate confident in every inning that their guy on the mound is going to pitch well enough for them to be in the game. Beyond Jorge De La Rosa, the Rockies simply haven’t had that consistently in 2015.

The Rockies offense can be very good. It can deliver like it did on Sunday, but it can only perform like that when the pitching is consistent enough to allow the offense a chance to deliver the big hits. If the starting pitcher gets the team into a hole early, then continues to let the runs pile on, it isn’t uncommon for the Rockies swings to get big, presumably because the offense is trying to get runs in a hurry.

A whole team effort is what it takes to win baseball games, but a good start from the pitcher makes things go so much easier for the offense. The Rockies have to get to the point where the talent that is on the mound every day is good enough to give the team a chance to win.

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