However, the Colorado Rockies can head to a much colder Chicago with some positives.
Sure, Mike Stanton crushed a Matt Belisle pitch deep into the orange sea of seats at whatever-it's-called-this-year park in Miami. Sure, the Rockies come from behind fell short when Seth Smith couldn't get the go-ahead run home. Sure, it is a disappointing end result for the Rockies.
The difference? Rockies fans are exhaling everywhere, relaxing about their ace, Ubaldo Jimenez, returning to form. Was he completely back to the Jimenez of 2010, no. But for four innings he was. After looking like the shell of that pitcher, and having fans start to question whether the injured cuticle had more to do with the club's fear of a shoulder issue.
The tank hit empty in the fifth inning for Jimenez. It was apparent that he simply didn't have it anymore. However, the first four innings was exactly what everyone had been hoping to see.
It was just four innings, but one or two more starts, and those four innings will suddenly turn into six or seven innings as the Dominican builds up arm strength.
The other extreme positive for the Rockies was the fact that they once again came from behind. So far in this young season, the Rockies have made a habit of doing something that they consistently failed at. In 2010, when the Rockies got down be a run or two, they shut it down and seemed to sulk, hoping for better results the next day. In 2011, the Rockies have fought back when they have been down, scratching back into games.
Despite the early season success of getting back into games, it was easy to dismiss that as bad teams having bad pitchers on the mound.
Sunday dispelled that though, as the Rockies found ways to get to Josh Johnson, perhaps the best right handed pitcher in the National League, and despite the fact that he had his best stuff through the first five innings. Is not as if Johnson was off of his game. He was un-hittable in the early going.
So while the game goes down in the books as a loss, and the Rockies leave whatever-its-called stadium for the final time, they can head to Chicago knowing that they can score runs on anyone in the league, regardless of who they are, and regardless if they have their best stuff or not.
The Rockies have definitely come back to earth from their hot start, but they certainly are still showing signs of turning the corner from the team that they were last year.
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