Was that all that caused the Rockies to drop Friday night’s affair and see their division lead shrink? Hardly. Gray issued five walks in four innings and Rusin showed he still is nowhere near the pitcher in 2018 he was in 2017. And arguably the most productive batter of the night? That would be Butera, who came in hitting .184 but went 2-for-2 with an RBI in his first two plate appearances against Kershaw.
And let’s not forget about the baseball gods making an appearance again in the seventh inning as reliever Seunghwan Oh deflected what looked to be a double play ball from Hernandez away from DJ LeMahieu and into right field for a base hit, sending Cody Bellinger to third on the play. The double play, however, happened on the next play as Austin Barnes struck out and Bellinger was caught trying to steal home on a double steal on a smart play by Butera and the Rockies infield.
The baseball gods giveth … and don’t cause calls to be overturned on replay. They’re fickle and, like Puig, not our friend … at least on Friday night.
But again, don’t just blame one bad inning or bad hops for Friday night’s loss. The Rockies didn’t take advantages of scoring opportunities when they presented themselves. Five times in nine innings, the Rockies had the leadoff man reach base. The only time that batter scored was in the second inning … and that was because Holliday smacked a home run to knock himself in. Colorado left the bases loaded in the seventh and a leadoff double by Holliday in the eighth was wasted.
Colorado finished the night 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position. Gripe about the strike zone, call and shake your fist toward New York, but the Rockies didn’t get the hit when they needed to get it. That’s been a familiar refrain during Colorado’s losses in recent weeks.
"“I thought we got some guys on. It’s a competition between pitcher and hitter. That’s the beauty of this game,” Black said. “It happens. When the game is tight, when the game is close, it comes down to those confrontations. Tonight, a couple of different at-bats, they won.”"
Black likes to often quip, “That’s baseball.” It can apply to many situations over the course of a season … or even a single game like Friday night.
The Rockies had their chances and didn’t capitalize. It doesn’t mean the season is over or the Dodgers are charging. When the sun came up this morning, the Rockies were still in first place in the National League West. They will be tonight when they take the field with Colorado’s Kyle Freeland squaring off against Walker Buehler.
Colorado will have their chances to win on Saturday night. Here’s hoping the baseball gods smile on them.