As soon as it looks like the Colorado Rockies are dead in the water, they take another breath and show that they are not quite done yet.
On Sunday, the Rockies defeated the San Diego Padres 4-2 at Petco Park, completing a three-game sweep. It was the first sweep on the road for the Rockies in the entire 2010 campaign.
The Rockies won on great pitching from Jorge De La Rosa and something that has eluded the club throughout the season, clutch hitting.
After the Padres had tied it up at two on a big home run from Miguel Tejada in the bottom of the 6th inning, the Rockies answered back in their next at-bat.
Melvin Mora, with the bases loaded and one out, knocked a two-run single past a drawn in David Eckstein at second base.
After Mora's huge hit, the bullpen, behind two dominant frames from Matt Belisle and a confirmation that Huston Street is back on his game with a scoreless 9th sealed the sweep for a Rockies team that now finds itself just 4-1/2 games behind the Padres for the division lead.
Just as Rockies fans were settling into the fact that they were going to spend October watching other teams battle it out for the World Series crown, this team decides that they actually do know how to play on the road.
While the Rockies still have a fighting chance in the National League West they still have a big mountain to climb to get back where they need to be. Right now it is pretty tough for Rockies fans to not look back and wonder "what if."
If the Rockies end up falling just a few games short it is going to be impossible to not look back at several different stretches throughout the season. Obviously the easiest part of the season to look back on would be the road trip immediately after the All-Star break in which the Rockies went 2-9.
The fact is, however, that road trip is only partially to blame for the Rockies still being a playoff longshot. This Rockies team has yet to hit on all cylinders. They have not played their baseball in any facet of the game. They haven't hit in the clutch, they haven't pitched to their capabilities. they have been sloppy on defense and on the bases.
If, at any point in the season, the Rockies had actually played to their capabilities, they would be looking at how to get their starters some rest before making their run in the postseason.
They are, however, still in the race, and have a very good chance of making a run at Coors Field to put themselves within a few games of the playoffs.
It is the third reminder from this Rockies organization that they can simply never be counted out.
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