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Rockies

Rockies fall as bullpen, offense again stumble

Starting pitcher Ryan Castellani struggled through 5 1/3 innings Sunday, but somehow allowed only one unearned run and left with the Rockies leading 3-1. Unfortunately Colorado wouldn’t score again, while the Angels rallied for a 5-3 victory at Coors Field.

Castellani allowed just one hit, but walked six and hit a batter over the course of 96 pitches. In all the Rockies walked 10 batters as they lost the three-game series against Los Angeles.

Had the offense managed more than three runs the bullpen’s inability to keep the Angels bats in checked might not have mattered. Instead Colorado is now 21-25 on the season and dropping further behind the Giants (23-24) in the race for the final Wild Card playoff spot.

“We’ve talked about it all season. We need the big hit with runners in scoring position. We’ve got to break through, keep the line moving and string hits together, more than just a couple — and (we) can’t rely on one grand slam.”

Rockies manager Bud Black said of his offense’s inability to come through when it mattered most on Sunday.

Pujols makes history

On the other side of the diamond Sunday was one of the all-time greats adding another achievement to list of accomplishments. Albert Pujols hit his 660th career home run, tying Willie Mays for fifth on the all-time home runs list.

The two-run homer off Colorado’s Carlos Estévez in the eight inning put the Angels ahead for good.

“For it to be the game winner on top of all that, it was kind of like a perfect moment for him. And for us. We’re still not out of this thing, mathematically, and to get a big knock like that, it could help get our spirits (up) for the next couple days.”

Angels manager Joe Maddon said after the game.

Highlights: Angels 5, Rockies 3

Extra bases

  • Colorado’s Nolan Arenado didn’t play Sunday as he continues to deal with soreness in his left shoulder.
    “It’s something that I’ve had for some time, and I’ve tried to play through it,” Arenado said before the game. “It’s flared up sometimes, then gone down. It’s flaring up again. Trainers are helping me through it, but it’s frustrating.”
  • Outfielder Raimel Tapia was replaced by David Dahl in the fifth inning after suffering from dizziness after hitting his head on a diving catch earlier in the game.
  • The Rockies are off today before opening a two-game series against Oakland at Coors Field on Tuesday. Righty Antonio Senzatela (3-2, 3.69 ERA) is scheduled to start the opener for Colorado.
  • The Denver Post’s Patrick Saunders made a to-do list for the Rockies to check off in order to make the playoffs this season.
  • While this weekend TheAthletic.com’s Nick Groke answered readers questions.
  • In other MLB news on Sunday Cubs right-hander Alex Mills no-hit the Brewers in a 12-0 Chicago win.

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Rockies fall as bullpen, offense again stumble

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Rockies

Rockies swept by Padres, nine-game homestand on tap

The Rockies-Padres series mercifully came to a close for Colorado, as San Diego finished off a three-game sweep with a 5-3 win.

Colorado lost in walk-off fashion Monday (1-0) and got routed Tuesday (14-5) before dropping another close game to finish out the series Wednesday.

The Rockies are off today before starting a nine-game homestand Friday, with a three game series against the Angels. After that Colorado has a short two-game series vs. Oakland and then a four-game set vs. the Dodgers.

The homestand is the last one of the season for Colorado. After the series finale on Sunday, Sept. 20 vs. L.A. the Rockies play four games each vs. the Giants and Diamondbacks on the road to finish the year.

Chances for Rocktober?

Despite sitting at 20-23, the Rockies still have a legitimate chances at making the playoffs this season, assuming they can start winning at home. Colorado is 9-12 at Coors, including going 4-10 over the past 14 games there.

As it stands heading into Thursday’s games, the Rockies (20-23, .465) trail the Giants (23-21, .523) and Marlins (19-19, .500) for one of the final two playoffs berths.

Remember, this season, due to games being canceled over COVID-19 outbreaks, there’s a chance not all teams will play a full 60-game season. In that case winning percentage will determine who gets in.

Rockies-Padres highlights

No fans, no fun for Nolan

The Denver Post’s Patrick Saunders wrote about how Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado might miss having fans at games more than anyone else.

“It’s nice to have that energy, that little pick me up. Sometimes it’s hard to find, within yourself, when you are going day-to-day. So it’s fun to play in good environments because that gets you going.”

Arenado said before Wednesday’s game.

Dahl returns

One bright spot Wednesday was the return of outfielder David Dahl for Colorado. Dahl had been on the 10-day IL due to lower back soreness and last played in a game on Aug. 17.

He didn’t play Wednesday, but manager Bud Black is hoping Dahl is able to contribute down the stretch for the Rockies.

“It looks as though he’s healthy, he’s ready to go, he’s in a good frame of mind. We’ll try to get him in there as we get to the weekend and as we get to this homestand. But we need David to be ready.”

Black said.

Extra bases

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Padres hammer Rockies, González 14-5

A night after getting shutout by San Diego things started off well for Colorado. Nolan Arenado hit a three-run homer, his first on the road this season, in the top of the first to give the Rockies a 3-0 lead, then the bottom of the first happened. Colorado starter Chi Chi González walked three and […]

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Rockies

Giants wallop Rockies 23-5 at Coors Field

Alex Dickerson homered three times and drove in six runs as the Giants became the first team in MLB history to have three players with at least six RBIs in the same game as San Francisco routed the Rockies 23-5 on Tuesday night.

“That’s by far the best game I’ve ever had in my life.”

Dickerson said after the game.

Dickerson, who finished the game 5-for-6, nearly had a fourth home run when he drilled a ball off the wall in deep left-center field in the ninth inning. His 16 total bases (three homers, two doubles) tied the Giants franchise record set by Willie Mays back in 1961. And he also became the 15th player in MLB history with five extra-base hits in a game.

“It’s incredible company. The things (Mays) did in his career and everything he means to San Francisco, to even be mentioned in the same breath as him is an incredible honor.”

Dickerson said of his achievement.

Brandon Crawford and Donovan Solano joined Dickerson with six RBI games for San Francisco. When all was said and done the Giants finished with 27 hits on the night.

Highlights from the Giants 23-5 beatdown of the Rockies on Tuesday night.

Gray, relievers roughed up

Righty Jon Gray started for the Rockies and lasted just 2 2/3 innings giving up seven runs on nine hits. It didn’t get any better from there as the next four Colorado relievers all gave up at least two runs.

It got so bad that backup catcher Drew Butera came on to pitch in the eighth inning. He actually finished with the best line of anyone for Colorado as he threw 1 2/3 innings and gave up just one run on three hits while striking out one. His scoreless ninth inning was the only inning San Francisco didn’t score in on Tuesday night.

The 23 runs allowed marks the third most in franchise history. The Reds beat Colorado 24-12 in 1999 and the Cubs won 26-7 back in 1995.

As for the 27 hits allowed, that’s tied for the second most allowed by the Rockies. The Reds finished with 28 in their win back in 1999.

Colorado’s starting pitchers were a integral piece of the Rockies’ 11-3 start to the season, but in the past 12 games they have a 7.63 ERA.

“We talked just a few days ago about our starting pitchers leading the National League in quality starts, and you look at the innings pitched and it’s right there with any rotation in baseball. But those guys have to perform to get us into the ballgame. It’s awful hard to claw back like we’ve had to do the last number of games. Starting pitching is critical.”

Rockies manager Bud Black said after Tuesday night’s debacle.

Extra bases

Outfielder Kevin Pillar made his debut for Colorado in the game, he started in center field and went 0-for-3. The Rockies optioned left-handed pitcher Phillip Diehl to the team’s alternate training site to make room for Pillar.

  • The lone bright spot for Colorado in the loss was Garrett Hampson who started at shortstop in place of Trevor Story and went 2-for-4 with two home runs. It was Story’s first game off this season.
  • TheAthletic.com’s Nick Groke wrote about a weird decision by Giants manager Gabe Kapler. In the seventh inning with San Francisco leading 18-2 Kapler challenged a call at first base that Giants right fielder Seven Duggar was out. The call was upheld. But challenging a call with your team up 16 in the seventh inning feels a bit extreme. Also, the Rockies had just two hits to that point in the game.
  • The teams finish off their short two-game series this afternoon at 1:10 p.m. (AT&T SportsNet) with Kyle Freeland (2-1, 3.43 ERA) scheduled to start for Colorado against San Francisco’s Logan Webb (2-3, 4.35).

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Rockies

Rockies blanked 6-0, add OF Pillar via trade

On a day when the Rockies traded for Boston outfielder Kevin Pillar Colorado’s bats were silent as San Diego blanked the Rockies 6-0 at Coors Field to take the four-game series and drop Colorado a game below .5oo (17-18).

Rockies starter Germán Márquez wasn’t sharp, but with Colorado’s offense MIA it didn’t really matter. Márquez labored through six innings allowing five runs on eight hits while striking out seven.

“His stuff is fine, he’s just not hitting spots. I’m not worried about the arm. Right now it’s about location. He’s not making enough good pitches at the most critical times.”

Rockies manager Bud Black said of Márquez after the game.

Márquez has now lost a career-worst four decisions in a row and is 2-5 with a 4.88 ERA on the season. During his past five starts he’s 0-4 with a 6.83 ERA.

“My fastball location wasn’t good today,. I missed with a couple of pitches but I have to hang in there and keep working.”

Márquez said.

Offensive woes

On the offensive side of things third baseman Nolan Arenado went 1-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to seven games, but that’s about the only good news for the Rockies. Colorado finished the game with seven hits, all singles, save for a double by Daniel Murphy.

When asked after the game if he thinks the offense can get things turned around Arenado had this to say:

“I believe so. We just haven’t been consistent at all. That’s kind of our thing this year. We just haven’t been consistent throughout the lineup, and you see the Padres over there and they’re on fire — all the hitters over there.”

Rockies add OF Pillar

Before the game the Rockies traded for Pillar from the Red Sox in hopes that he can help offensively as well as defensively. But the fact is Pillar likely will help more patrolling the outfield, than he will at the plate.

Black said he expects Pillar to play center field for the Rockies and bat in the lower half of the lineup, which has been another sore spot for the Rockies.

Another reason Colorado acquire Pillar is due to the fact David Dahl remains on the IL and it’s not clear when he will return. The Rockies will trade either a player to be named or cash considerations, as well as international amateur signing bonus pool space for Pillar.

Rodgers goes back on injured list

On Monday the Rockies also placed infielder Brendan Rodgers on the 10-day IL with a right shoulder strain. Colorado is hopeful the injury is minor.

Since being recalled from alternative camp on Aug. 19 Rodgers has played in seven games hitting 0.95 (2-for-21) with a double and two RBI.

Extra bases

The Rockies welcome in the Giants for a quick two-game series starting tonight (6:40 p.m., AT&T SportsNet). Colorado righty Jon Gray (2-3, 5.45 ERA) will take the mound for the Rockies, while the Giants have yet to name a starter for the game.

  • MLB.com ranked all the trades made on Monday. The Rockies acquisition of Pillar ranked seventh overall. Unfortunately for Rockies fans, the Padres trade for Cleveland’s Mike Clevinger ranked No. 1.

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