Rockies vs. Pirates: Rox can’t finish the job in Pittsburgh

We should have won that one.
Colorado Rockies v Pittsburgh Pirates
Colorado Rockies v Pittsburgh Pirates / Pamela Smith/GettyImages
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The Positives

The Jacob Stallings revenge tour continues. After homering against the Marlins last series, Stallings went yard again against his other former club. Stallings has been phenomenal this year as the backup catcher, and Bud Black seems to be taking notice as he was given two starts in a series for the first time this year and was even moved up to number six in the order in the series finale.

Sean Bouchard had a great game on Sunday, going 2-3 and back-to-back with Stallings in the Rockies lone scoring inning. Brendan Rodgers, Elias Diaz, and Ryan McMahon all had good offensive series. The trio are key members to the middle of the lineup, so it is good to see them all clicking together.

Victor Vodnik had a clean two innings and Anthony Molina did the same in his inning of work. Molina is turning into a feel-good story for the Rockies, as the Rule-5 pick has bounced back from a disastrous start to his career with his last four outings being scoreless.

Austin Gomber was fantastic through six innings of work. The big lefty gave up just four hits and went blow-for-blow with an electric rookie in Jared Jones. Gomber sits as the only Rockies starter with a sub-4 ERA and seems to be turning into a reliable arm in his age 30 season. 

The Negatives

34 games into the season, the Rockies are still without a series win. In fact, they haven’t won a series since last September despite two golden opportunities against struggling Marlins and Pirates teams. The Rockies offense continues to struggle to put up runs. They managed just six runs in the series and a single hit in game two. They’ve now been shutout four times this season. Jordan Beck struggled mightily, going 0-10 with five strikeouts in the three-game tilt. Beck is hitting just .143 through his first 21 at-bats. He certainly has time to turn it around, but the high strikeout numbers are a bit of a concern as he tries to adjust to the major league level.

Ryan Feltner seems to stay in games just an inning too long, as his second good start in a row ended with one bad inning and a Rockies loss. Brenton Doyle had a tough series, going 1-12 with three strikeouts. Doyle has cooled off since being moved up in the lineup, and a change might help him to regain his footing. 

Coors Crown: Cal Quantrill

This one was easy. Quantrill said, “get on my back, and we’ll win this game.” Quantrill absolutely dominated the Pirates for his first win of the season, going 7.2 innings of scoreless baseball, giving up just four hits and striking out nine, good for the second highest mark of his career. Quantrill has been a great find for this Rockies team after being scooped up from the Guardians. He currently sits with a 4.31 ERA, which is very solid considering where Rockies starters usually end up. Quantrill takes the Coors Crown lead with his third of the season, and if he continues to pitch like this, he can find value for the Rockies long term or as a trade piece to capitalize on. 

Rockiest Rocky: Nick Mears

I really like Nick Mears and I really want him to be good. The stuff is so nasty, and he showed awesome flashes to start the year. But it has been rough lately and the command issues continue to rear their head at him. Despite his arsenal, Mears fails to get swings and misses like you would expect and gives up way too many walks. Mears took the ball in a scoreless game on Saturday, then proceeded to load the bases and give up a single to Jack Suwinski and take the loss. Mears' season stat line has landed in a tough place, as he currently sits with a 6.08 ERA and 11 more walks and hits than strikeouts. We know he has the stuff to turn it around, but he has a lot to clean up if he’s going to turn into the potential closer that he’s capable of.

Stat Pack

Offensive Highlights: 

Elias Diaz: 5-11, 1 R, (series); .308 AVG, 12 R, .777 OPS (season totals)

Ryan McMahon: 2-11, 1 HR, 1 RBI; .304 AVG, 5 HR, 19 RBI

Jacob Stallings: 3-8, 1 HR, 2 RBI; .351 AVG, 2 HR, .987 OPS

Brendan Rodgers: 3-10, 1 RBI, 1 R; .243 AVG, 1 HR, 8 RBI

Pitching Highlights: 

Austin Gomber: 6 IP, 0 ER, 3 K (series); 3.79 ERA, 38 IP, 25 K (season totals)

Victor Vodnik: 2 IP, 0 ER, 3 K; 2.29 ERA, 19.2 IP, 18 K

Anthony Molina: 1 IP, 0 ER, 1 K; 9.00 ERA, 12 IP, 5 K

Ryan Feltner: 5.2 IP, 5 ER, 3 K; 5.54 ERA, 39 IP, 36 K

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