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Rockies win opening series in Texas

Rockies

Kyle Freeland pitched six innings, and allowed two runs as the Rockies beat the Rangers 5-2 on Sunday. With the win Colorado won the opening series over the Rangers, having won two of three games.

It took awhile, but the Rockies hit their first home runs of the season on Sunday as shortstop Trevor Story connected on a two-run shot in the fourth inning and added a solo homer in the sixth.

My thoughts: It’s tough to read too much into any single series of a baseball season, but at least through three games Colorado’s pitching was outstanding. The Rockies held Texas to five total runs in the series.

On the flip side, the offensive’s struggles are pretty concerning as Colorado only managed eight runs in the series and was shutout in the opener.

  • The Rockies are off today before playing a two-game series in Oakland on Tuesday and Wednesday. Then comes another off day before the Rockies home opener on Friday vs. the Padres.
    Antonio Senzatela is scheduled to make his first art of the season on Tuesday vs. the A’s.
  • Righty-handed reliever Scott Oberg is doubtful of being able to come off the IL in time for the home opener.
  • TheAthletic.com had a nice breakdown of the opening series, including why rookie Brendan Rodgers didn’t make the team and is now working out at Metro State.

Nuggets

The NBA is back starting this week. The season is scheduled to resume on Thursday, while the Nuggets first game back is Saturday vs. the Miami Heat (11 a.m., Altitude, 950 AM).

Denver plays its final scrimmage tonight against Orlando (5 p.m., Altitude) before the eight-game seeding games begin.

  • On Saturday the Nuggets lost to the Pelicans 119-104 in a scrimmage, but it’s extremely hard to judge where the team is right now since in that game they were without: Jamal Murray, Gary Harris, Will Barton and Paul Millsap.
    My thoughts: Chances are, with there not being any home-court advantage in the bubble, the Nuggets, along with most teams, will be more focused on getting ready for the playoffs than simply winning games during the seeding round.
    Even before the break head coach Michael Malone seemed to be constantly struggling with figuring out a rotation and getting everyone enough minutes. That’s not going to change going forward, especially with Bol Bol playing well right now.
    The goal needs to be figuring out an eight- or nine-man rotation that Malone can trust when the playoffs start.
  • The Denver Post talked with Bol’s trainer and he said Bol’s basketball IQ is what sets him apart.

Avalanche

The Avs announced their 31-player roster, as did all remaining NHL teams on Sunday. If there was any surprise for Colorado it was that forward Vladislav Kamenev did not make the squad. Kamenev had played a career-most 38 games this season.

Colorado did keep a trio of young players, forward Shane Bowers and defensemen Connor Timmins and Bowen Byram.

Colorado’s playoff seeding games begin Sunday, Aug. 2 against the St. Louis Blues.

Broncos

The Denver Post continued its breakdown of the Broncos by position. This weekend the focus was on the offensive line and the team’s receiving corps.

My thoughts: Man, these are two groups that not only could make or break the entire season, but I think could really range anywhere from a major strength to a major weakness.

Along the offensive line Garrett Bolles gets all the attention, but at least he plays just about every week. There’s just no telling what to expect from right tackle Ja’Wuan James this season. And while Denver has done exceptionally well with drafting centers, it still is concerning if Lloyd Cushenberry is the starter in his rookie season, particularly in a season that might not include any preseason games.

As for the receivers, Courtland Sutton has all the makings of a No. 1, but behind him it gets pretty murky.

I think the Broncos got a steal in Jerry Jeudy in the first round, but rookie wideouts oftentimes struggle in their first year, Sutton is a perfect example. Second-round pick K.J. Hamler is in the exact same boat. Maybe both players will be great from the get-go, but it’s much more likely they both have some growing pains this season.

If everything goes right with the two position groups it could allow the offensive to start approaching the levels we saw with Peyton Manning in the shotgun, but just a couple hiccups and they’ll be average under 20 points per game yet again.

Rapids

The Rapids are left searching for answers after a very disappointing MLS is Back Tournament that saw them sent packing after just three games (0-2-1).

CU Buffs

It was announced over the weekend that legendary CU ski coach Richard Rokos will retire following the 2020-21 season. The coming season will be Rokos 31st leading the CU program that has won eight team national titles and 43 individual ones.

Golf

The CoBank Colorado Open wrapped up on Sunday with Mark Anguiano taking home the $100,000 first-place check after shooting a tournament record 29-under par.

Nationally

The Miami Marlins game scheduled for Monday has been postponed as multiple Marlins players have tested positive for COVID-19.

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Rockies, Nuggets and Avs all gearing up for seasons

Rockies

It’s hard to believe that Opening Day is this week … assuming all goes according to plan. The Rockies are scheduled to play two exhibition games Tuesday and Wednesday in Texas against the Rangers, with the opener set for Friday.

Colorado wrapped up it’s 15-day summer camp on Sunday and manager Bud Black was most excited about how good the offense has looked.

My thoughts: I’m definitely excited for the season to be here at last, but my expectations for the Rockies still haven’t changed that much from when Spring Training began months ago. I expect them to hover somewhere around .500, probably finishing a few games under.

In this shortened season though their playoff chances definitely have increased though. All it takes is a hot stretch for a couple of weeks and they’ll be right in it.

Nuggets

The start of the NBA restart is coming up fast as well. Denver has its first scrimmage this Wednesday against the Washington Wizards and while they likely won’t play Gary Harris and Torrey Craig were reportedly en route to Orlando as of Sunday afternoon.

Harris was the final member of the Nuggets regular starting rotation that had yet to enter the NBA bubble. No word yet on the whereabouts of rookie Michael Porter Jr. though.

Avalanche

As the Avs also near their return to action count Ian Cole among those players who believe Colorado has a legitimate shoot to lift the Stanley Cup in a couple months.

Cole, a 10-year veteran, begins growing his playoff beard at the start of the hockey season, in October, if he thinks he’s on a playoff team. And since the playoffs are usually over by now this is already the longest he’s ever had it.

Here’s hoping he still is growing it in late August.

Broncos

The Denver Post began its series previewing the Broncos position groups. First up, the quarterbacks.

My thoughts: I’m cautiously optimistic that Drew Lock will be the long-term answer at quarterback for Denver. I don’t think that means he’s going to be be like Lamar Jackson and Patrick Mahomes and win the MVP award in his second year in the league however.

I do love the fact that John Elway and company have surrounded him with talent though. I also am hopeful that even if he struggles some this year, which is highly likely, that he still gets another year or two to learn and grow into the position.

Nationally

ESPN previews the upcoming MLB season with a look at the stars and storylines they’re most excited to see. Not surprisingly no Rockies players made the list.