The Colorado Rockies were done in by the big inning, something that has been their nemesis in this extremely disappointing 2011 season.
Alex White overcame poor command to keep his team in the game, but barely got through the sixth inning. Fighting through six walks, White weaved and bobbed through the first five innings, giving up just one run. Then, the Diamondbacks got to him.
White's start looked like it was going to be an ugly one early.
Ryan Roberts launched White's third pitch of the game deep into the left field bleachers to give the Diamondbacks a 1-0 lead. It took White 29 more pitches to get through the first inning, but he was able to stop the bleeding with just the one run.
Despite the poor start, his second in a Rockies uniform, White has shown what the Rockies liked about the right-hander. He mixes his speeds extremely well. He pitches slightly different than most pitchers. Instead of relying on one pitch to get outs, White relies on mixing his speeds instead of his pitches.
The fastball the White throws can be anywhere from 95 MPH to 87. That isn't the difference between his fastball and his change up, those are all fastballs. The difference is how much movement he is getting on that fastball.
Much like Jhoulys Chacin, White is very young. He just turned 23-years old. He barely pitched in the minor leagues, getting drafted in June of 2010 and already being in the big leagues. What that means is that he is going to take time to fully develop into the Major League pitcher that he has the potential to be.
The good news for the Rockies, however, is that despite a 5.33 ERA through two starts with the Rockies, he has still shown flashes of brilliance. He isn't getting beat around. On Monday night he struggled with his control, but besides the sixth inning, he was able to work his way out of the traffic.
What that means is that White, despite being young, has a pretty good idea what he is doing on the mound. He isn't relying on trying to throw it past people, he is pitching. That is a good sign for the future.
Whether the trade of Ubaldo Jimenez was justified is far from being an answered question. However, seeing early positives from White, who wasn't the centerpiece of the deal, is a good beginning.