Root Sports play-by-play man Drew Goodman summed it up nicely when the Rockies defeated the Padres 10-9 on a Nolan Arenado walk-off home run Friday night. He said that after the Rockies blew two 6-run leads, they simply had to find a way to win the game. Put another way, if the Rockies win 10-9 after blowing a couple big leads it feels the same as if they blew the Padres out. But if you blow those big leads and then lose, it almost feels like that loss matters more than a typical regular season loss.
After a disappointing 6-5 extra innings loss Thursday night against the Padres, the Rockies looked like they were ready to make a statement in the first few innings Friday night. They jumped out to a big lead early and they had their stud Jorge De La Rosa on the mound. That seemed like a recipe for an easy victory until De La Rosa got touched up a little bit; he ended up surrendering 4 ER on a staggering 11 hits in 5 innings pitched. Still, you would think that a stellar Rockies bullpen could hold a second big lead, right?
Enter Rob Scahill.
Scahill had lots of issues, mainly the fact that he’s not any good and therefore gets hit hard. But when you are accounting for the 5 earned runs he allowed while not recording a single out, you have to note this sentence from the AP game recap:
The Padres trailed by six runs early in the game and 9-4 heading into the seventh. Chase Headley began the inning when he was hit by Rob Scahill , possibly as retaliation for when starter Edinson Volquez plunked Troy Tulowitzki in the second.
Because anytime you can have Rob Scahill send a message to the opposing team, you gotta do it. He means business. He always means business. Thank goodness Matt Belisle cleaned things up once the game was tied at 9 so that the Rockies could salvage the win.
The Rockies appear to have moved on from a stretch in which their mighty lineup struggled to score enough runs. In this game it was 10 runs on 16 hits thanks to big games from Todd Helton, Tulowitzki, Arenado and others. Carlos Gonzalez contributed two triples before leaving the game with an injured ankle/knee. While the roster is imperfect and necessitates some tweaks in the near future, this team is 33-29 on the year and has a chance to string some wins together if the offense continues to produce like it has in the last four games.
We should all recap the night by celebrating Arenado. Like young players do, he has slumped in recent weeks. Tonight we were reminded why hype has followed the young third baseman his whole career. He was spectacular on defense, slugged the home run, and showed the youthful excitement of a player who might start to heat things up in the coming weeks. I don’t know about you, but I sure find that to be an exciting development from a game the Rockies had to win.