Throughout the course of the Major League season, every team will likely lose a game or two because of a spot starter. Whether it is a younger pitcher trying to prove himself, a veteran journeyman who is still hanging on, or somebody in between, these tough-minded souls get thrown into the fire with little notice thanks to injuries to the normal starting rotation.
Not that Drew Pomeranz had exactly been inspiring confidence lately, but that’s still how it felt for the Rockies last night. About the time it was 6-0 in the 3rd inning, it felt like one of those games that a team loses over the course of a long season because of a minor league pitcher making a spot start. If that is the case, it came at the worst possible time for the Colorado Rockies, who will now need to win Sunday afternoon to avoid a sub-.500 home stand against three of the worst teams in the National League.
Here was McHugh’s final line: 5.0 IP, 9 hits, 6 earned runs. He did walk only one hitter and, if the standard was still simply pitch counts, he might have been able to pitch into the 7th inning.
On the Brewers side it was the hyper-and-annoying Carlos Gomez with three stolen bases, Juan Francisco with a missile of a three-run home run, and Jonathan Lucroy‘s solo home run that keyed the victory.
Today the Rockies face a must-win. Normally it is not so black and white in July of a 162 game season, but it is today. There is something severely damaging about the thought of losing this series, at home, against the Braun-less Brewers. If they win, it is still a disappointing stretch at Coors Field, but at least this team can still reasonably think it lives to fight another day.