There have been plenty of times when the Colorado Rockies had an explosion of offense against the San Francisco Giants, but none have been like what we saw on May 5, 2016.
On this April Fool’s Day, we take a look back at the game where the Colorado Rockies tied a Major League record with 13 runs in the fifth inning on their way to a 17-7 victory over the Giants. Yes, you could say that San Francisco’s efforts to get the Rockies out in that historic inning was a fool’s venture.
And, before you ask, this game was not played in Denver. The Rockies tied the MLB record for a fifth-inning outburst (and franchise record in any inning) in San Francisco at what was then known as AT&T Park. So just stop already with the Coors takes.
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That 13-run outburst tied the 13-run outburst by the Chicago Colts against the Pittsburgh Alleghenys on August 16, 1890. As a side note, the Alleghenys went 23-113 that season.
OK, let’s hop back to 2016. In that fateful fifth inning at AT&T Park, Giants starter Matt Cain faced five batters without recording an out before turning things over to Vin Mazzaro, who would get just one out while facing 10 batters. Between the two pitchers in that inning, they would surrender four singles, four doubles, a home run, a walk, and hit a batter while their defense didn’t help the cause, letting them down with a pair of errors.
The half-inning took 37 minutes to complete and started with Trevor Story making history. His home run to left-center field on a 1-2 pitch was his 11th of the season and tied the Major League mark for the most home runs in a player’s first 27 games.
Charlie Blackmon would be the only Rockies player to not bat twice in the inning. Story homered and singled in the inning, part of a 3-for-5 performance. Carlos Gonzalez went 2-for-4 and scored three runs while Nolan Arenado (who reached on an error and was hit by a pitch in the fifth) smacked his league-leading 12th homer as part of a three-run first inning that would become a mere footnote to the game.
There have certainly been plenty of offensive outbursts in the history of the Rockies. However, to have one like this on the road and against a divisional opponent makes a historic inning perhaps even sweeter. No fooling there.