The Colorado Rockies enter the final day of the regular season with a record of 90-71, tied with the Los Angeles Dodgers for first place in the NL West as well as the second NL Wild Card spot. With this, the Rockies have determined who will start on Sunday and, depending on what happens on Sunday, who will start for them early next week.
With the Rockies 12-2 loss on Saturday after an awful start by Jon Gray in a big game (again), they have found themselves in a bind. Last night, Rockies manager Bud Black spoke with the media, including our own Kevin Henry, and he announced that the Rockies, in a somewhat surprising move, will start Tyler Anderson on Sunday.
He has been a lot better as of late as he has lasted six innings while only allowing 2 earned runs in each of his last two starts. However, he owns a 7.80 ERA in his last 10 starts (including the two most recent good ones) and a .301 opponent batting average.
Some people expected that they would go with German Marquez but, as Bud Black said, they want to save him for next week. He would be the Rockies next starter. It would be for Game 1 of the NLDS if the Rockies win the West and don’t need a Game 163 or a Wild Card Game.
However, he would start Game 163 in Los Angeles if it comes down to that or if the Rockies would be in the Wild Card outright in Chicago or Milwaukee, as the Cubs and Brewers are also in the same predicament as the Dodgers and Rockies as both are tied for the lead in the NL Central.
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In the Rockies worst case scenario, they will start Anderson on Sunday, Marquez in Game 163, and Kyle Freeland would then start in the Wild Card game. If that case were to happen and the Rockies were to advance to the NLDS (which is slated to start on Thursday), the Rockies would find themselves in a further bind, though. They would either start Jon Gray (on regular rest), Antonio Senzatela (on six days rest), or Tyler Anderson (on three days rest).
Marquez and Freeland, as you probably know, have been the Rockies most consistent starters of late and for much of the season. For Freeland, in his last 11 starts, he is 8-0 with a 2.18 ERA and a .234/.297/.326 opponent slash line. Marquez, in his last 12 starts, is 6-2 with a 2.16 ERA and a .201/.248/.305 opponent slash line.
For the Rockies today, though, they must win to have any hope at winning the West without having a Game 163 in Los Angeles on Monday. The Dodgers will either start Walker Buehler or Rich Hill against the San Francisco Giants.
All 15 MLB games on Sunday will start at 1 PM MT so the Dodgers, Brewers, Cubs, and Rockies will all be playing at the same time to figure out what the playoffs will look like so it will definitely a day for the history books however the situation breaks down.