Opening day at Coors field starts on Friday, April 9th as the Rockies open up at home against the San Diego Padres. The series is a good chance for the Rockies to build some early season momentum and beat a team that they should handle easily.
Game 1: Colin Rea vs Jordan Lyles
Game 2: Drew Pomeranz vs Jorge De La Rosa (0-0 9.64 ERA)
Game 3: Tyson Ross (0-1 11.81 ERA) vs Chad Bettis (0-0 8.44 ERA)
The series will be a good chance for Lyles to start his season on a high note and for De La Rosa and Bettis to rebound from poor first starts. San Diego was shutout in their first three games against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Clayton Kershaw pitched in the opener and it is expected that he would shut the Padres down, but the next two starters, Scott Kazmit and Kenta Maeda, were not expected to do as well. They are both quality pitchers, Maeda is a highly anticipated rookie, but the Padres offense was just dismal in the first three games. They will surely be looking to start their bats up at hitter-friendly Coors Field, but the Rockies pitchers will look to take advantage of their low confidence at the plate.
Drew Pomeranz will be starting against his old time and it will also be interesting to see what lineup Walt Weiss runs out against the lefty. With the off day after Wednesday’s game against the Diamondbacks, the lineup was probably more different looking than it will be on Friday afternoon. Look for Charlie to start and for Parra to also get some at-bats vs the lefty.
For Colorado, the pitching at home needs to be solid. It doesn’t need to be stellar, but quality Coors field outings in two of the three games are definitely desired. It will be exciting to see how Trevor Story performs at home. According to Story, he has only been to Coors three times and has never taken batting practice on the field. Let’s hope he enjoys it as much as other hitters seem to. It will also be fun to see if the homers keep flying at home. Chase field is definitely hitter friendly, but Coors is a launching pad where almost all of the Rockies players crush the ball. Nolan Arenado will hopefully get back to his spring training form as he has gone 2-13 in the first three games. Blackmon will also look to resume his leadoff hitter role and get on base at a higher clip than he is now. You shouldn’t worry though as three games mean nothing and both of these players are all-star caliber, and in the case of Nolan MVP caliber, players.
The Rockies would love to earn a sweep of the series, but winning two of three is the absolute worse they can do if they want to establish themselves as competitors early in the season. Winning the series is always what a team wants to do and winning at home is the best time to do it.