Ringside at Wrigley: Rockies Prevail in Extra Innings
If some free baseball is good, more is better.
After a 16-inning, six-hour game, the Rockies were back in action against the Cubs on Wednesday night.
I stumbled across a few key observations when I was inside the friendly confines knows as Wrigley Field in the Rockies 6-4 win over the Cubs in 10 innings.
First, Brett Anderson was straight dealing.
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The lefty went seven solid innings, striking out 11 and allowing two earned runs. If he continues to pitch as well as he did on Wednesday, he will justify why the Rockies traded for him this past offseason.
Anderson worked ahead and stayed ahead all night long. He didn’t walk a single batter and continued to showcase his trust in the curveball as he used it in all variances of the count. It didn’t matter if it was 0-0, 0-2 or 3-1 – the deuce was coming.
Going up against the majors’ 29th-ranked offense certainly helped, but you still have to tip your cap to Anderson for going out and giving the Rockies a chance to win. Plus, he didn’t break his finger while batting. Win-win.
Secondly, you can throw out the records. These teams were playing as if their playoff lives depended on it.
The two teams with the worst records in the National League gave everything they had for the full 10 innings. Even when the Rockies went up 5-4 in the 10th, manager Walt Weiss went out and challenged a call that would’ve created an even bigger margin. He understands that every win counts – and his job security may depend on it.
Brett Anderson’s performance on Wednesday night showed why the Rockies made a move for him last winter
Despite a mental lapse from Drew Stubbs in the eighth, both teams played flawless ball and were laying their bodies on the line in order to grab the win. Even hitters were rounding first hard on balls hit to the outfield in order to try and swipe an extra base.
Finally, getting runners into scoring position isn’t enough. It’s what you do when they are there and separates the winner from the loser.
This game came down to hitting with ducks on the pond. The Rockies went 5-for-14 with runners in scoring position whereas the Cubs went 2-for-8. No hit was bigger than Brandon Barnes’ bases loaded, RBI single in the 10th that put the Rockies on top for good.
The Cubs stranded seven runners and eight hitters in their lineup had at least one strikeout.
The Rockies will look to earn a series split tomorrow afternoon with first pitch slated for 2:20 (ET).