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Senzatela dazzles with arm and bat, Rockies defeat Giants in series finale

Drew Creasman Avatar
September 16, 2018

The Colorado Rockies nail-biting 3-2 win over the San Francisco Giants in the final of three will not squash concerns about the currents troubles of the team.

After not scoring a single run in the first two games, they didn’t exactly explode for revenge to show just how due they were. In fact, starting pitcher Antonio Senzatela, in addition to pitching five strong innings, delivered the key hit in the Rockies’ only rally of the day while the stars and veterans struggled to piece anything together.

The first inning was eerily similar to the type of offense the Rockies saw in the first two games of the series. Charlie Blackmon hit a leadoff double but would not move from his spot as the middle of the Colorado lineup went 0-for-3 with runners in scoring position.

But it only took one more inning for their fortunes to turn. Though, the source of their salvation was perhaps the least likely. Stepping into the box after a workaround of Chris Iannetta loaded the bases with one out, Senzatela had intent in his eyes.

Knowing full well he had just one hit on the season, he let go with strong confident swings early, fouling off a few tough pitches and laying off a few others. Dereck Rodriguez, certainly not wanting to walk the pitcher to bring in the first run of the game, challenged him with a fastball and Senzatela met the challenge. He produced another good swing and found a great result on a line drive that cleared the infield into left plating the Rockies first two runs of the game. And the series.

It even helped lead to the next one when, after a Charlie Blackmon walk, DJ LeMahieu was able to score a third run on a fly ball to center field.

After artfully work around traffic in the first three innings, Senzatela found a grove through 1-2-3 frames in the fourth and fifth. But the Giants got their rhythm in the sixth with a leadoff single from Joe Panik, San Francisco’s sixth single in the game, and a walk from Evan Longoria. That brought lefty Brandon Crawford to the plate which Bud Black countered by ending Senzatela’s afternoon and going to left-handed reliever Chris Rusin.

Rusin has had a Murphy’s Law season and after getting ahead 1-2, fell into a full count as tensions rose. But he came back with a good fastball and got Crawford swinging in what turned out to be his only encounter in the game.

That brought on Scott Oberg, who has been excellent since returning from and injury and a trip down to the minors. He struck out Austin Slater with a gorgeous slider but Chris Shaw jumped a first-pitch fastball in the next at-bat, lining it into right field to score Panik and get the Giants on the board.

Oberg made a nice defensive play on a slow roller up the third base line to end the inning with the Rockies still ahead 3-1.

He stayed on in the seventh and worked a very quick 1-2-3 inning with a pair of strikeouts.

Adam Ottavino came on in the eighth for his usual set-up duties and issued a leadoff walk to Panik which almost always means an easy stolen base. It did again this time and after getting Longoria to strike out and Crawford to ground out to short, that stolen base cost the Rockies a run when Austin Slater singled to center field.

He got Shaw to fly out to left to move the game to the ninth with the Rockies now clinging to a one-run lead.

Wade Davis was handed that lead looking for the save. His first two pitches weren’t anywhere close to the strike zone but he came all the way back to strike out Garcia, then got Hanson to roll over a weak groundout to first.

That brought Nick Hundley to the plate and again the Rockies closer fired wild on his first couple of offerings. But again he came back to strike him out, ending the contest and earning his NL-leading 40th save of the season.

Final Stats:

Antonio Senzatela: 5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K

Chris Rusin: 0.1 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K

Scott Oberg: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K

Adam Ottavino: 1 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 K

Wade Davis: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K


Ian Desmond: 2-for-3, 1 R

Antonio Senzatela: 1-for-3, 2 RBI

DJ LeMahieu: 0-for-3, 1 RBI

What’s Next:

It’s time for a big one. The Rockies next series could well determine the winners of the NL West should the teams play even otherwise. They are off to Los Angeles for a three-game set against the Dodgers.


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