Before the Rockies opening day victory over the Houston Astros yesterday, general manager Dan O’Dowd spoke about a number of important issues in the first few weeks of the year. Among these comments, O’Dowd dropped one of the favorite buzz phrases the team has used over the years:
“I thought there was a lot of trust in spring training and an incredible amount of joy. It’s obvious that some of the players we brought in have a slow heartbeat.”
Ahh yes. A slow heartbeat. Then again, we did see some really nice at-bats yesterday. In important situations, a number of hitters, especially Marco Scutaro and Michael Cuddyer, grinded long at-bats and put the ball in play. And only 3 Ks! We are not far removed from the days when certain hitters, who shall remain nameless (for now), would step up, take three long, loopy, “all I know how to do is pull the ball” swings, and strike out before you could say “situational hitting.” If the results from yesterday are something we see from the lineup consistently this season, I am fully willing to buy in when it comes to the importance of these so-called slow heartbeats.
Jim Tracy will dispatch the same lineup as last night as Jamie Moyer tries to make baseball history tonight:
With Jordan Pacheco presumably slated to start Sunday, Nelson will have another chance to prove he can hit enough to stay in the lineup. Fowler will try to build on his successful night last night and show that he can consistently be disruptive at the top of the order.
And here is the lineup for the Houston Astros as they will try to avoid being the team that loses to the oldest pitcher to ever win a Major League game:
…Lucas Harrell is relatively unknown, with 5 career starts entering the season. It appears that his tendencies will call on another attribute the Rockies hope to find in their veteran lineup: patience at the plate…
…Speaking of patience at the plate, can somebody let Chris Nelson know he doesn’t have to swing at the first pitch?
…Speaking of patience at the plate again, the story, of course, will be whether or not the soft tossing Moyer can successfully keep the professional hitters off balance in regular season action. While the focus is on him, it will be up to the Rockies hitters to prove they can produce enough runs (presumably without the help of 4 Astros errors) to take the pressure off Moyer early…
Besides, if Moyer wins, then the Rockies will be a lead story on Sportscenter. You want to look good on Sportscenter, right guys?