Wilin Rosario, Batting Practice in Albuquerque Credit: Troy Olsen (@Troybuquerque)
Jon Gray had been giving up huge first innings in his last few starts but on May 2nd, he held the Bees to just one run in the first. The Topes offense helped him out scoring two in the bottom of the first. Gray never trailed after that as the Topes won 12-10 in front of nearly 11,000 people.
Jon Gray was 0-3 with an ERA over 10 heading into this game. It was time for a change. He needed a change. Gray had been getting knocked around in the first inning of games but on Saturday, he was able to hold the bees to one run in the first and one run in the second, scattering 5 hits and a walk over 5 innings for the win. He had two strike outs as he was in control all day, throwing 56 of his 86 pitches for strikes, producing two strike outs.
Jairo Diaz looked solid in his third save, pitching a perfect ninth, striking out one.
Unfortunately, that is where the good pitching ended.
Rex Brothers followed Gray and allowed 2 runs on four hits over two innings, raising his ERA to 6.75. He did strike out three.
Simon Castro came in, in the eight, getting blasted for 5 runs on 4 hits annd a walk in two thirds of an inning.
Aaron Laffey tried to close out the inning giving up a run on two hits in a third of an inning.
The offense, behind Gray’s solid pitching, finally warmed up with all but one player getting a hit.
Tim Wheeler got the day off defensively, playing DH, bumped his batting average up to .277 by going two for five, scoring two runs.
Tim Smalling went two for four, both doubles as he continues to take advantage of the extra playing time created by Cristhian Adames ankle injury.
Ryan Casteel continues his offensive tear going 3-5, knocking in 3 and raising his batting average to .341. If he can get his defense right, he may be a solid backup catcher for the Rockies.
Roger Bernadina comes off the disabled list and makes me look foolish in saying he should be benched. He goes 3-5 driving in 2, pushing his average up to .243. He got the next day off in that crowded outfield.
Joey Wong and Matt McBride both added a hit each, both still batting under .200.
Angelys Nina collected a hit and an error. Nina has played well and could be a utility infielder if the Rockies decide Daniel Descalso isn’t going to improve.
The only offensive player to not collect a hit was red hot Ben Paulsen. His 0-4 dropped his average to .290. He’s still the outfielder to watch for the Rockies in my opinion.
Rockies fans will be watching to see if Chad Bettis can improve on Sunday as he and Gray are two of three legitimate call up options for the Rockies.