It’s hard to know just which game to single out as the biggest nightmare in the Rockies’ Memorial Day series with the Phillies in 1993. In the series as a whole, the Phillies outscored the Rockies 39-10. They pitched two complete games out of three total. There was no Mitch Williams in sight. It was an unmitigated disaster of a series.
Just for kicks, let’s take a look at the final game of the series, on May 30th. The Phils were going for the sweep; the Rox were just trying to keep the hometown crowd from switching loyalties. Their record was 14-36 and they were 18 1/2 games out of first place in the National League West.
Lance Painter climbed the hill for the Rockies, with a grand total of 9 1/3 major-league innings and 11 earned runs under his belt. He faced the frightening likes of Lenny Dykstra, John Kruk, and Pete Incaviglia. You remember those mulleted ’90s Phillies. You know you would have run for cover. Painter, to his credit, did not, though by the 5th inning he had apparently had enough, and began doing whatever he could to get Don Baylor to pull the plug. In that inning, he gave up 5 runs on 3 long balls by Darren Daulton, Tommy Greene, and Mariano Duncan.
You may recall that Tommy Greene is a pitcher. Well, that’s just the kind of game this was. On an 0-1 count, he hit a line drive to deep left and it dropped into the seats, allowing Kim Batiste to score from 1st. It was Greene’s third career homer.
Painter’s cry for help wasn’t loud enough, apparently, because Baylor left him in and then sent him out again to tackle the 6th. He got a quick flyout and then put a pair of runners on, which was the last straw. He was pulled for Jeff Parrett. Parrett got Wes Chamberlain to fly out, but Nelson Liriano couldn’t handle the throw from Alex Cole, and the lead runner scored. Dykstra came up to the plate with 2 outs and hit a bases-clearing double to put the Phillies up 9-0.
Butch Henry took over the pitching in the top of the 7th with the same score. He immediately loaded the bases and then gave up a triple to Incaviglia. A sacrifice fly scored him to make it 13-0 Phils. Greene was pitching a 3-hit shutout when Andres Galarraga finally managed a little offense with a solo shot in the bottom of the inning. This was shaping up to be a blowout though. And after Gary Wayne gave up 5 more runs on 3 homers, it couldn’t have been called anything else.
As the Rockies sent out four different pitchers, none of whom managed a scoreless outing, Greene pitched a tidy little complete game. And the Phillies’ offense scored 18 runs while going 4-for-12 with runners in scoring position. That’s what happens when you hit six home runs. Well done, Rockies. Well done.