Colorado Rockies morning after: Trevor Story provides fitting end to home season

Sep 28, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story (27) fields the ball in the third inning against the Washington Nationals at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 28, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story (27) fields the ball in the third inning against the Washington Nationals at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports /

As storybook endings go, one could not have written a much better ending for Trevor Story and the Colorado Rockies home season on Wednesday afternoon.

With free agency looming and Story playing in perhaps his final home game in a Rockies uniform, the All-Star shortstop responded with a 4-for-4 day at the plate, reaching base on all five of his at-bats, while scoring three runs in Colorado’s 10-5 rain-delayed victory against Washington before a crowd of 20,613 at Coors Field.

Trevor Story gave Colorado Rockies fans at Coors Field perhaps a final glimpse of his talent and love for the game.

On an afternoon that started with partly cloudy skies and a first-pitch of 70 degrees, but some six hours later following a two-hour hiatus because of rain showers, the temperature had dropped to the mid-50s, it was only appropriate that the final run of the game and the Rockies home season was scored as Story hustled to slide across the plate on a groundout by Ryan McMahon.

“I think today, in a lot of ways, epitomized how he plays,” Colorado Rockies manager Bud Black told media, including Rox Pile, during his postgame comments about the play of Story. “That last play (Story’s eighth-inning run), going on contact with Mac’s grounder–he got a great jump, showed speed. (Washington shortstop Alcides) Escobar realized that, because of Trev’s speed, he didn’t have a play at the plate. Trev scored the run.”

“Today was a game that we have seen Trevor have many many times where he impacted the game on defense, with his legs, with the bat.”

For his part, Story touched on the importance of having a great final home game performance, if not just for this season, but for perhaps his last time at Coors Field as a Rockie.

“I am pretty satisfied with it,” said Story, who was misty-eyed in more than one of his responses to reporters’ questions post-game Wednesday.

“Obviously, I wish I would have hit the ball a little harder and done some more damage…. Just a crazy game. Honestly, if you think about it, just the way it kind of all unfolded and how the hits happened and stuff like that.”

Story’s day started with an opposite-field single to right field in the first inning, followed by infield singles in the third, fourth and sixth innings, and then a walk in his final plate appearance in the eighth inning.

“To be able to get on base five times,” he added. “Kind of walk that last at bat. I know that it’s not the cool thing to do. But I felt like I was in game mode the whole time. That is what I wanted to do. I just kind of took what the game was giving me.”

In the end, for a team player like Story, a “W” was the goal on Wednesday against the Nationals.

“All in all, I would say (I am) very satisfied with it,” he said. “Most of all we won. That’s what it’s all about. I am happy with that, even if it was the last one that we won.”

The win gave Colorado a final 2021 mark of 48-33 at Coors Field, the seventh-best home record in franchise history, for a .593 winning percentage. Had the Rox swept the three-game series with the Nationals, they would have finished with a home winning percentage above .600.

Black pointed out that Story was not the only player to turn in a solid performance in Wednesday’s victory, the second straight for the Rox to end the season.

“It was a good game for us,” the manager said as the Rockies finished with 14 hits while Colorado pitchers netted 10 strikeouts. “It took a while to get there with the rain and the weather. There are a lot of guys who played well for us today both on the mound and in the field.”

Black was alluding to several players who turned in solid games in the home finale. They included:

Ryan McMahon: Slammed a three-run, opposite-field homer in the first inning—his 23rd of the season—to help the Rox overcome an early 2-0 deficit before driving in his fourth run of the day with a grounder to score Story in the eighth inning.

C.J. Cron: Had two hits, including a run-scoring double for his 30th two-bagger of the year, and reached base three times.

Raimel Tapia: Finished with two hits, including a double, while knocking in a run.

Sam Hilliard: Lined a bases-loaded, two-run single in the third inning to put Colorado ahead to stay, 6-5.

Dom Nuñez: Reached base three times with a pair of hits and a walk while scoring a run.

Colton Welker: Notched his first career extra-base blow, a pinch-hit RBI double in the fifth inning, before coming around to tally a run during a three-run frame for the Rox.

Charlie Blackmon: Like Cron and Nunez, he reached base three times—the 23rd time in 2021 for Chuck Nazty to reach base three times or more. Also scored two runs.

Rockies bullpen: Five Colorado relievers—Yency Almonte, Ashton Goudeau, Jhoulys Chacin, Lucas Gilbreath and Daniel Bard—combined to permit just one hit in seven scoreless innings while fanning nine in relief of starter Peter Lambert. Goudeau (2-1) earned his first career win at Coors Field in seven appearances there, tossing 2.2 innings while registering four strikeouts. Bard closed out the game with two hitless innings and three strikeouts.

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After a day off from action Thursday, Colorado hits the road for its final three games of the season against Arizona (pending no makeup game Monday at Atlanta). Jon Gray (8-12, 4.28 ERA) is slated to get the starting nod on the mound for the Rockies. Game time is set for 7:40 p.m. (Mountain time).

Rox Pile’s Kevin Henry will be with the team this weekend in Arizona so be sure to check the site as we will have some exclusive content in the coming days.