In the land of Three Rivers

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From the clubhouse

And the Lord told Tracy, Speak to the rock, and thy team shall be blessed. And Jim Tracy took his team to Pittsburgh, and smite the rock with CarGo’s bat. And the Lord was not pleased and caused the heavens to open up over PNC Park. And Tracy prayed, asking for the rains to stop. And The Lord replied, Because thou hath disobeyed me, thou shall face thy nemesis, and they shall cause grief in the hits and runs thy team will score.
–The Book of Baseball 4:23-25, Red letter edition

I hate rain. Besides the fact you can’t play ball, it ruins a lot of plans for outdoors. (Yes, we could always use a little more rain in this dry state of Colorado, but I digress.) But I do love doubleheaders, and the Rockies had one of those after being rained out Monday at PNC Park in Pittsburgh. And we even got the “traditional” doubleheaders, where the two games are played almost immediately back to back. And then, we got to see some old faces, this time they decided to haunt us.

One of the players I still like even if he’s no longer on our team is Clint Barmes. He was what I originally classified as part of the “double play machine”, also known as #DPmachine on twitter. But it wasn’t just that. He had the great plays. I remember in 2009 when he ran all the way to the 1st base foul line just to catch a popup. Unfortunately, the reason he was released was primarily because his bat wasn’t stellar. It’s kind of the same problem that’s plagued the Rockies in recent years (as recently as 2011). It was not, like what @t3mperedsteele thinks, that his dropped blooper that ruined #ubaldouche’s claim at win #20. If that is the case, I think we should cut Troy Tulowitzki for his 6 errors… or what about Holliday’s butterfingers? lol

And then, there was a former manager of ours in the opposite dugout. Clint Hurdle, the last manager released by his former bench coach (and current Rockies manager) Jim Tracy. In retrospec, each game was as interesting as the manager dual going on. Who could outperform each other. And if the series proves right, Hurdle won by a 2-1 margin. But, each team would have to battle elements both within and external factors. If you are familiar with other Rockies games this year, this series might have set you back. You’d never thought the Rockies could win 2-1 in a day game, let alone a doubleheader. Yet, despite the low score, the level of frustration increased the later it got, because we were at risk of being no-hit against. It was broken up in the 7th inning, as we got our first run. Getting the winning run in the 8th was a relief. And I have to thank @ColoSportSpaz for being an excellent partner on twitter while the game was going on.

If I go from the best game to the worst, Tuesday’s game was the second best game. It was also another close one. Carlos Gonzalez had 2 2-run homers. However, Rex Brothers had some issues, and then Belisle gave up the winning run. A healthy talk with @Townie813 and @RockiesReview about a decision I disagreed with: I thought Tracy should have put in Belisle instead of Brothers. Or my ultimate suggestion: Belisle in the 7th, Brothers in the 8th, if he wanted to give Rex some reassurance. I do concede that Belisle had a bad night, which is rare for him, and we can write that off. It may not have mattered in any case, given the outcome of both pitchers. But it was a shame that effort by one player offensively was essentially wasted.

The worst of the series was the ‘nightcap’ of the doubleheader. Despite the ‘sun conspiracy theories’, Chacin let a few fly ball oopsies by CarGo rattle him out. before the 5th inning was over, there was a 5 spot given to the home team. Please don’t mention ‘ace’ with him… I think he’s on the hotseat to perform better. Interesting enough, Tracy used the “extra man” rule for the doubleheader to use Zach Putnam for the 2nd game. Putnam held the fort down during this time, but will ultimately be returned to the Springs before Friday’s game.

In short, an odd series, complicated with rain and little hits. I felt like Tracy sinned in his manoevers, and suffered as a result. But I can’t complain about a team at .500 through April so far. If we do break out, Tracy has learned his lesson. If not, the book of Baseball has written his departure in chapter 10 verse 1 or so.*

*The Book of Baseball is cleverly written with each month being a chapter, and the verses are the days.

Thanks to @ColoSportSpaz @Townie813 @RockiesReview for your contributations to today’s blog

Up on deck

This weekend will be a great one. The Mets come into town for the weekend, hoping they don’t leave us a rotten Apple Core in Denver. Then, we get our first look at our nemesis, the 1st place Dodgers. I’m looking forward to this series, though I hope we can put up a good fight, and 17-16 runs a game. :)

Sliding home

Rafael Rojas C (@rafaelrojasc) is a great read during Rockies games. He has two awesome quotes about the Pittsburgh Series that I’d love to share:

Revenge of the former Rox. Now on DVD.

and

The DVD Jhoulys Chacin hates watching is on endless loop: high, low pitches, on the side pitches. Command difficulties galore.

Now I want to watch some Major League on DVD… or bluray :)

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