If the Colorado Rockies have been the Superman to the MLBs second half, it’s only fitting that Kenta Maeda would be their kryptonite. The Rox couldn’t pull off the sweep of rival Los Angeles as they dropped Thursday night’s rubber match 4-2.
Coming into tonight, the Colorado Rockies as a team had scored 19 runs in their previous two games against Los Angeles. In their last three game-set against L.A., the Rockies only managed to score two runs in the entire series in L.A. July 1-3. Kenta Maeda helped remind Colorado of that series in L.A., the boys in purple haven’t been able to figure him out yet. Here are three takeaways from Thursday’s loss.
Taming the Unfriendly Confines
Tyler Chatwood went for his 11th win of the season and made his 10th start at Coors Field on Thursday night. Chatwood has been an enigma this season, to say the least. Chatwood leads the world in road ERA which sits at an eye-popping 1.30, but the Redlands, CA native can’t seem to catch a break at home as he sports a 5.69 ERA on Blake Street.
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On a night where Chatwood appeared to have his most electric stuff and great command, Chatwood still couldn’t muster enough moxie to tame his demons at Coors Field. On Thursday night, it wasn’t the stuff or command that failed him, it was the fact that he couldn’t limit the damage. To the Dodgers credit, they cranked out timely hits and appeared very sick of getting beat up on the last few nights.
The Timing is Right
Late season call up and top prospect David Dahl might just go down as the guy that saved Colorado’s season. With Rookie of the Year candidate Trevor Story hitting the shelf for the rest of the season, many fans felt deflated despite the team’s recent success. Since his contract was purchased from Triple-A Albuquerque on July 25th, David has played10 games at the game’s biggest stage. Dahl has collected a hit in all 10 of those games; including three big flies. Dahl is now by himself in second place for longest hitting streak to start a career by a Rockie.
Juan Pierre is first with 16 consecutive hits. If Colorado can make a real run at this playoff thing, Dahl could go down as the guy that brought it all together. Dahl was the 10th-overall pick in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft.
Slow and Steady Wins the Race
The Rockies are now 14-6 since the All-Star break, which is the best in all of baseball. After the first 81 games of the year, Colorado stood at 37-44. The reason for Colorado’s recent string of success can easily be identified as the pitching staff. In the month of July, the club recorded 20 quality starts; that’s a franchise record for one month. At this point in the season, the Rockies now have two more quality starts than what they ended 2015 with.
Although they lost tonight and certainly aren’t going to be sweeping teams every series, the Rockies will need to grind out series victories from here on out. A loss every now and then doesn’t hurt much, but this seemingly out-of-nowhere streak has made them a contender again. It’s time to walk the walk by grinding out the second half anyway they can.
In case you missed it live, Daniel Descalso made an amazing defensive play in the top of the third. With a guy on first with no outs in a tied game, Descalso sprinted to the wall on a deep shot to left. With no regard for his well-being, Descalso found the baseball on the run and immediately crashed into the left-field wall head first, all while holding onto the ball somehow. The spectacular catch obviously looked awkward and Descalso’s status is uncertain as he had to leave later in the game. Daniel was diagnosed with a shoulder contusion.
After winning his 100th career game last time out against the Mets, Jorge De La Rosa will face off against the Miami Marlins. Miami currently sits just ahead of the Rockies in the race for the National League’s second Wild Card spot. Since earning a spot back into the Rockies rotation, Jorge is 5-3 with a 3.54 ERA over nine starts.