Series Preview: Pittsburgh Pirates vs Colorado Rockies
Aug 30, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Colorado Rockies players celebrate after defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. Colorado won 5-0. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
The Colorado Rockies host the playoff-chasing Pittsburgh Pirates for a four-game series at Coors Field beginning Monday night.
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The Colorado Rockies followed up a 5-5 road trip last week with a series victory against the San Diego Padres over the weekend, so they’re clearly playing some of their best baseball at the end of the season… when nothing matters.
That being said, they get a bona fide playoff team coming to Denver this week — the Pittsburgh Pirates — and the Rockies have the ability to play the spoiler for them just as they’ll soon have for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Or, this could always be the longest four days of our baseball lives on the way to another sweep. As always, here are your probable pitchers, along with some notes on the Colorado Rockies and Pittsburgh Pirates.
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DATES, TIMES, AND PITCHERS (all times MT)
Monday, September 21, 6:40 pm
A.J. Burnett (8-5, 3.15) vs. Jon Gray (0-1, 5.00)
Tuesday, September 22, 6:40 pm
Charlie Morton (9-8, 4.26) vs. Chris Rusin (5-8, 5.11)
Wednesday, September 23, 6:40 pm
Jeff Locke (8-11, 4.48) vs. Jorge De La Rosa (9-7, 4.17)***
Thursday, September 24, 1:10 pm
TBD (-) vs. Chad Bettis (8-5, 4.46)
***UPDATE, 9/21, 10:41 pm MT: Jorge De La Rosa has been scratched from this start due to Achilles heel tendinitis. Christian Bergman (3-0, 3.81) will be taking his place.
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SERIES KEYS FOR THE ROCKIES
Another week, another spoiler
Last week it was the Los Angeles Dodgers. The week before that it was the San Francisco Giants.
Now, it’s the Pittsburgh Pirates!
At 29 games over .500, the Bucs are legit and looking to cruise through Denver as they try to take over the St. Louis Cardinals for first place in the National League Central.
The Rockies are arguably sending out their four very best pitchers to the Pirates series (with Yohan Flande and Kyle Kendrick set to start against the Dodgers over the weekend.
Do the Rox have any spoiler action within them this week?
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Bettis and De La Rosa
We wrote this piece a few days ago after Bettis’ decent start against the Padres. Both Bettis and De La Rosa will get a shot against the Pirates; De La Rosa threw seven scoreless innings against Pittsburgh the last time these two clubs met.
Both Bettis and De La Rosa are likely going to get at most three more starts this year, including this one against Pittsburgh, so the two of them would do well to end the season strong
End on a high streak
This one goes without saying, right? The Rockies are 7-6 in their last 13 games — that includes ten on the road (!) — and they have a chance to finish their final seven games at home on a streak.
They surely won’t sweep the Pirates (right? …..right?), but winning two of four would be a feasible and realistic expectation for a team that’s, you know otherwise underachieved on all expectations.