Season finale repeat of Saturday

Brewers Rockies Baseball (1).JPEGDavid Zalubowski AP Photo

The Rockies couldn’t end the season the way they would have liked as they lost to the Brewers in extras by a score of 6-4. This game was not only a repeat of Saturday’s matchup, but was very similar to many of the Rockies losses this year. A late rally, a solid start by the starting pitcher, and a late lead blown by the bullpen all seemed to be themes for the Rockies this year and it highlights, once again, what the priorities need to be this offseason.

The offense for both teams got some runs on the board early and resulted in a 2-2 tie through the first two innings. Charlie Blackmon drove in both runs for the Rockies, one on a solo shot to leadoff the game and one on a double, and the Brewers scored two in the second off of German Marquez.

After the second, Marquez settled down and ended up cruising through six innings. He allowed only six hits and a walk while striking out seven Brewers for what was a really good way to end his season. Marquez, like Hoffman who pitched Saturday, will be competing for a rotation spot this coming year for what should be a dangerous and young Rockies rotation.

The Rockies ended up taking a lead in the fifth inning when a couple of doubles from the rookies gave the Rockies a run. Tom Murphy started it off with a two out double and Jordan Patterson drove him in with a double of his own.

The lead would disappear in the eighth inning as the Brewers got a two run home run to take a 4-3 lead. Then once again, the Rockies rallied in the ninth to tie the game up and send it to extras. A couple of broken bat hits and some sloppy play by the Brewers allowed the Rockies to tie the game up, but it would not last long at all.

With Chris Rusin on the mound and two outs, the Brewers got another homer in extras to take a lead for good and send the Rockies to the offseason with a bad taste in their mouths. It capped what has been a season of blown late leads and sends the Rockies with a need of getting some bullpen reliability. There were very few bright spots out of the bullpen this year and if the Rockies are to compete, they need to make some improvements there.

With some bullpen help, they will also be getting a new manager this offseason as Walt Weiss announced he will not return. Depending on who the Rockies can pick up, this is almost an immediate improvement to the bullpen as Walt’s bullpen management was always at the forefront of his criticisms.

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Rockies lose in extras to Brew Crew

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David Zalubowski AP Photo

It is pointless to speculate with “what ifs” this late in the season with a team that is out of contention, but it is impossible not to think of the “what ifs” with a team like the Rockies. Saturday night was more of the same and raises the questions of “if the Rockies won the games they should have won, where would they be?” Last night was another of those games and while they never had a lead in the game, they did rally back from a deficit to tie the game in the ninth and the momentum looked to be in their favor.

With a dead arm, Tyler Anderson was scratched from his final start of the 2016 season, but it did give way to Jeff Hoffman. Hoffman hadn’t made a start since September 14th and he looked eager to return to the mound. On a pitch limit, Hoffman was only able to get through five innings, but it was a great five innings. He struck out seven batters while walking two and allowing only two hits. The only run against him came because of an error by Cristhian Adames in the fifth. It was probably the best start of Hoffman’s season and it was a great way for him to end his rookie campaign.

The Brewers scored the first three runs of the game and looked to be in control of this one, but in the eighth the Rockies turned it around. A Tony Wolters triple and single by Pat Valaika brought the Rockies within two. An error then allowed runners to get to first and second. With two outs, Cargo was finally able to tally his 100th RBI of the season with a single to bring the Rockies within one.

The Rockies then completed their rally in the ninth with some more rookie magic. Jordan Patterson singled for his third hit of the game and would eventually come around on a double down the left field line by Tom Murphy. That tied the game up at 3-3 and it gave the Rockies what looked like to be the momentum they needed to win the game.

Adam Ottavino came on to work the tenth inning, but ran into trouble with the Brewers power hitter Chris Carter. With two outs and two strikes on Carter, Ottavino was in a perfect position to have a perfect inning. His slider caught far too much of the plate though and Carter launched a ball to left field for the game winning run. The Rockies couldn’t rally back in the bottom of the inning and the Brewers came away with the win.

The Rockies finish the 2016 campaign with German Marquez taking the mound. This game doesn’t mean anything for either team, but both would like to finish their years with wins. At the very least for the Rockies, they will finish third in the division which exceeds most peoples expectations for this year.

Rockies win game against Brewers

Brewers Rockies Baseball.JPEG
David Zalubowski AP Photo

The Rockies started their season finale with a win against the Brewers and while it wasn’t the most exciting game of the year, the win was a good one and it gives the Rockies a chance to go out on a high note. The final score was 4-1 and the bullpen actually did really good at keeping the score there.

Nolan Arenado hit his 41st home run of the year in the first inning to give the Rockies the only runs they would need. They would get one more run each in the next two innings. One came from a Charlie Blackmon single and the other off the bat of Nick Hundley.

Chad Bettis finished his 2016 with a great start at home, allowing only a solo home run to Chris Carter in the fourth. Bettis went 6.2 innings while allowing quite a few base runners, but none would cross the plate. With eight hits and three walks, the game could have gotten out of hand multiple times, but some key defensive play and clutch pitches got the Rockies out of the innings without much harm

Bettis was removed with two outs in the seventh and Carlos Estevez came on to try and keep the game in hand. Besides a walk, Estevez pitched very well and didn’t allow any Brewers to even come close to scoring. Adam Ottavino came on after Estevez and worked a clean ninth for his seventh save of the year.

Overall, it was a great game to start the final home stand of the year. The offense did enough to get the runs they needed, but more importantly, the pitching didn’t fail them. Some good defense from Arenado and David Dahl in left kept the Brewers from rallying, and the two bullpen pitchers did all they could to keep Milwaukee off the board.

This game was meaningless in all respects that neither team is going to the postseason, but this game means a lot for the players. Nolan Arenado fueled his possible MVP campaign with two hits and a home run. DJ LeMahieu went hitless which hurts his batting title chances, but he is still ahead in the race and it looks good that he might win. Other than that, David Dahl had a good game and the Rockies came away with a win that means a lot going forward.