Colorado Rockies Spoil Giants’ Home Opener, Win 2-0


Apr 13, 2015; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner rides into AT&T Park waving a 2014 pennate during opening day festivities prior to their MLB baseball game with the Colorado Rockies in San Francisco. Mandatory Credit: Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

On a day where the San Francisco Giants celebrated their 2014 World Series championship in their home opener, the Colorado Rockies spoiled the party with a 2-0 victory.

Eddie Butler tossed 5.1 scoreless innings, but walked six and hit a batter, and thanks to timely Troy Tulowitzki hitting and 3.2 scoreless innings from the bullpen, the Colorado Rockies improved to 4-0 on the road and 5-2 overall on the young season after beating the San Francisco Giants 2-0 at AT&T Park Monday afternoon.

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In the first inning, Eddie Butler got himself in a jam that saw the bases loaded thanks to two singles and a hit batter.

Fortunately, though, he worked out of it and Butler’s sinker and changeup were working for him early.

The Rockies failed to attack Giants’ starter Chris Heston at the start of the game, and even though Heston was making just his third big league start, he cruised through the lineup early and tossed just 18 pitches through two innings.

Butler worked out of a bases loaded jam again in the second inning, but the Rockies got no closer to figuring out Heston’s stuff and the 0-0 tie remained on this, the Giants’ home opener.

Stop me if you’ve heard this before, though: in the third, Butler worked out of more traffic in the third, wiggling away from runners on first and second. Through a scoreless three innings, though, Butler did get seven ground ball outs. Silver linings.

The Rockies finally pushed across the first run of the game in the top of the fourth when a Troy Tulowitzki single scored Charlie Blackmon and made it 1-0, but that was all the Rox could muster on Heston through four frames.

Butler continue living dangerously in the bottom of the fourth, but thanks to the Giants leaving ten men on base across the first four innings, the Rockies escaped unscathed and maintained the 1-0 lead heading to the fifth.

A DJ LeMahieu infield single in the fifth inning didn’t lead to any runs, but it did extended his hitting streak to seven games to start the season.

Butler pushed through a relatively easy fifth (only one base runner!) and became the pitcher of record as the Rockies clung to the 1-0 lead through five full innings.

In the sixth, Butler was lifted with one out and one on in favor of Brooks Brown, who retired both hitters he faced and preserved the Rockies’ 1-0 lead heading into the final three stanzas.

Butler’s line finished allowing five hits, six walks and a hit batter – but no runs – with just one strikeout in 5.1 innings pitched.

In the seventh, a two-out double by Nick Hundley followed by another infield single by LeMahieu put Rockies runners on first and third with two outs. A Heston wild pitch brought home Hundley from third to extend the Rockies lead to 2-0.

Christian Friedrich came on for the bottom of the seventh, and the Rockies needed his 1-2-3 inning with two strikeouts.

In the top of the eighth, former Rockie Jeremy Affeldt replaced Chris Heston facing the top of the Rockies’ order.

With the bases loaded after a Carlos Gonzalez single, Justin Morneau double, and intentional walk to Nolan Arenado, Affeldt faced Corey Dickerson with the bases loaded and two outs.

Unfortunately, Affeldt induced a Dickerson ground ball, and the Rockies took a 2-0 lead – and a new bullpen – to the bottom of the eighth inning.

Boone Logan tossed a clean eighth despite hitting a batter, and the Rockies – for the second time in two days – took a two-run lead to the ninth inning.

In the top of the ninth, back-to-back singles by Hundley and LeMahieu (his third infield single of the day) gave the Rockies two on – with nobody out – against Giants reliever George Kontos.

Kontos induced a Daniel Descalso pop-out before giving way to left-hander (and former Rockie) Javier Lopez, brought in to face Blackmon and Gonzalez.

Pinch-hitter Drew Stubbs grounded into a fielder’s choice, leaving runners at first and third with two outs for Gonzalez. CarGo couldn’t capitalize, and Rafael Betancourt took the ball in the ninth for his first save opportunity since August of 2013, with the 2-0 lead hanging in the balance.

Betancourt worked a perfect inning to preserve the win, and the shutout, for the club which maintains first place in the National League West.

Blackmon led the way for the Rockies, and finished the game 2-for-4 with a run scored. LeMahieu added the three infield singles to his tally, and is now hitting a gaudy .517 on the young season.

On Tuesday night, Christian Bergman will face Tim Hudson for game two of the three-game series. First pitch is set for 8:15 pm MT.