Saturday, June 16, 2012

Colorado Rockies: Sometimes you just lose

Friedrich is going to have some bad starts.
It is easy to be negative. It is easy to suggest firing every person who has ever claimed to work for the Colorado Rockies. It is easy to blame any member of the coaching staff or front office for the failures of the Rockies.

However, blaming those people gets old. It is natural to try and dissect the issues and diagnose the problem. Once the issue is figured out, and nothing happens, it just becomes complaining.

The Rockies were soundly beat on Saturday 4-1. If the score was covered up and a person was just watching the game, they probably would have thought it was 10-1. The Rockies were never in this one. They spent much of the game looking very young, and very bad.

Christian Friedrich, the latest Rockies pitcher to dazzle in one start, then look lost in the next, continued the trend on Saturday. In four of his starts, he has looked incredible. His curveball is sharp and more importantly, he throws strikes.

The strike-throwing was the issue on Saturday. The young lefty walked five and hit another batter. His command was nowhere to be found. He made it through five innings, giving up just two earned runs, but in 98 total pitches, only 48 found the strike zone.

Mechanically, without watching video, it looks like Friedrich is using less of his legs than he was in previous starts. He doesn't have the same bend in his back leg, forcing a different release point and destroying his command in the process.

The fact is, it is just one of those games. Friedrich has all the talent in the world, but he wasn't supposed to be in the big leagues yet. He was supposed to be ironing out the kinks in his delivery in Colorado Springs all year long. Instead, he has been forced into the rotation due to injury and poor performance. Being forced to learn at the big league level means that there are going to be starts like this one along the way. That is all there is to it.

Couple a start like Friedrich has with Tigers starter Doug Fister fooling the Rockies batters all day long, it was going to be a bad day. Once the Rockies started throwing the ball around, as they did in the 5th inning, the game was over for the Rockies. In the inning, Friedrich was able to stab at a comebacker from Miguel Cabrera. He knocked the ball just to his right. He scampered to it quickly and threw to first, wildly. The throw skipped all the way down the right field warning track where catcher Wilin Rosario snagged it. With Cabrera easily trotting into third base, Rosario fired the ball in for no apparent reason. The ball brushed off of Cabrera and into the stands, giving Cabrera the little league home run.

It was a play that showed the youth of the Rockies. Rosario never should have thought of throwing the ball in, but did. From there, it was just going through the motions for the Rockies. They looked outmatched. They played like they were outmatched.

The Rockies take the field for another day game on Sunday. They send Jeremy Guthrie to the mound in possibly his final start as a Rockie. If he continues to struggle, there is no reason why the club should keep him in the rotation.

In the midst of the negativity, in the midst of a season gone wrong, sometimes bad baseball just happens. Maybe it is someone's fault, maybe it is a few people's fault. However, trying to assign that fault is only helpful if change might actually happen. At this point, that doesn't seem likely, no matter how bad it gets.

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  1. I now look foreward more to the TV commercials vs watching the game

  2. Bob Apodaca makes every pitcher consistently worse = FACT

    I seriously wonder how he does it.