Jon Gray made his 2016 debut on Friday night, and while it left a little to be desired for the 24-year old rookie, he was effective enough for the Rockies offense to pick up the win 7-5 over the Dodgers.
Coming back from two deficits, the Rockies fought this whole game to come back for the win. The game started off pretty bad. Two home runs in the first inning, a two run shot by Corey Seager followed by a solo shot from Adrian Gonzalez put the Rockies down 3-0 in the first inning. The first inning looked like it would be a long game for Gray, but he came back in the second inning and regained control of the game long enough for the Rockies to claw their way back into it.
The Rockies would score their first run in the second inning when Tony Wolters grounded out with the bases loaded scoring Nolan Arenado. They would come back in the fourth to score a few more runs. The inning started with a bomb from Nolan Arenado, his 7th of the year. Gerrardo Parra would follow that up with a single and two batters later, Ryan Raburn hit his 3rd homer of the year to put the Rockies up 4-3.
They wouldn’t remain ahead for long as during the next inning, Adrian Gonzalez hit a two-run double with the bases loaded. That would put the Rockies back down again. Jon Gray would finish the fifth inning and that would be the end of his night. His final line was a perplexing one. He pitched five innings and gave up five earned runs, but he did strikeout 10, a career high. There was certainly glimpses of effectiveness for Gray, but there is room to grow as well for when his next start comes.
Both teams would go quiet for a couple of innings until the bottom of the 7th. With runners on second and third and DJ LeMahieu at the plate, the Rockies only needed a run to tie it. DJ did just that and got a ball in play deep enough for Brandon Barnes to score. With that sac fly the Rockies tied the game at 5-5 and only had to rely on their bullpen to shut the Dodgers down.
The bullpen just that for the rest of the game and the Rockies offense did their job as well. In the bottom of the eighth, Brandon Barnes launched a ball to right-center that caromed off the wall and allowed Arenado and Mark Reynolds to score. Barnes would wind up on third for a triple and the eventual game winning RBIs.
Closer Jack McGee came in with the Rockies ahead by two and had a perfect inning to earn the save and give the Rockies the win. It was McGee’s fourth save of the year and he has certainly fit in well as the Rockies closer. With a win on Saturday, the Rockies could win the series win early and possibly go for the sweep on Sunday. Even though the season is early, every division win counts, especially against a perennial competitor and division rival like the Dodgers.
Yasiel Puig had perhaps the best throw I’ve ever seen to cut Trevor Story down on his way to third. After his the catch at the wall, the ball got away from Puig for a moment until he picked it up and launched it to Justin Turner who made the scoop and tag to get Trevor Story out.
The Rockies bullpen had a great game and kept the Dodgers scoreless for 4 innings after Gray left. Gonzalez Germen, Boone Logan, Chad Qualls, and Jake Mcgee all combined for a scoreless four innings while allowing only 1 hit and 2 walks.