On the last night of the summer at Coors Field, with a lively crowd split evenly between purple and blue, the Rockies went ahead by two runs over NL West-rivals the Dodgers.
But Los Angeles emerged with a 5-4 win from 10 innings.
Colorado was unable to produce a clutch hit – 4-of-20 with the runners in the scoring position – while close Zhoulis Chasin left LA’s game-winning run on an Albert Pujols RBI single. The Rockies (70-80) continued their final homestand on Wednesday in the second matchup of the three-match series against the Dodgers.
Colorado’s bullpen combination of Robert Stephenson, Tyler Kinley and Carlos Estevez was brilliant on Tuesday, with no runs on just one hit. The Rockies also had the opportunity to advance in seventh and ninth places without an outsider and a runner-up in second. They never came.
But Pujols took the game away with a second pitch in which the RBI singled out Chasin, who scored the Dodgers’ designated runner-up in the 10th.
The night began with a pitching duel. Beginners Antonio Senztella and Julio Urias combined to retire 23 consecutive batsmen to keep the game scoreless through three innings.
Garrett Hampson broke through with a leadoff single for Colorado in fourth place. He came home when Charlie Blackmon hit a two-way RBI into the wall twice to the right. CJ Krone followed it up with his own RBI double to take the Rockies 2-0.
But Senzatella ran into trouble when he dropped two-out singles to Gavin Lux and Luke Raleigh in fifth. A Ureas RBI single brings LA within one run. Mookie Bates then reached the base of an infield single to tie the game.
Ryan McMahon ripped the double to deep to advance to fifth. He finished third on the Ureas on a so-called bulk. But Ryan Vilade is off the ground, Senzatella hits a swing and Hampson walks out to end the frame. It came back to bite Colorado in the next innings when Max Muncie RBI put the Rockies into the hole of a run. Los Angeles extended their lead to 4–2 on a Will Smith sacrificial fly, which scored Muncie.
Colorado returned to sixth place, with two RBI doubles each from CJ Crone and Elias Diaz to tie the doubles game.
Senzatella ended his stellar stretch of quality outings in seven consecutive starts since 11 August. He ended the night with four earned runs on seven hits in six innings. He issued zero walks and three strikes.
Lambert’s verdict is about to come. Starting right-handed pitcher Peter Lambert is nearing his MLB return since undergoing Tommy John surgery ahead of the 2020 season. Lambert threw a bullpen session on Tuesday.
“I’m going to check in with Peter and the pitching coaches to see how he performed and how he’s feeling tomorrow. The next step will probably be for him to throw a game over the weekend. Either with us here or triple- In A,” said manager Bud Black. “I want to see how he feels physically. I want to know his emotional state coming back from all these minor league rehab assignments and whether he is ready to pitch in the major leagues. “
Joe is unlikely to return. Injured first baseman Connor Joe (a right hamstring strain) was expected to return by the end of the season. However, the Rockies are less optimistic now.
“Connor is doing just fine. It’s going to be really close to the finish line here whether he makes it (back this season) or not,” Black said. “I talked to him today. We’re probably going to be able to determine where he is physically in a day or two. But, honestly, it’s not looking great for Connor.
“There is still pain in the hamstring and whether it makes sense to push is the question. The answer is probably not.”
on the roof
Dodgers RHP Walker Buehler (14-4, ep. 2.39) on Rockies RHP German Marquez (12-10, 4.16)
Wednesday at 6:40 p.m., Coors Field
radio: 630 AM/94.1 FM
Marquez is set to make his 31st start of the season and his second against the Dodgers. The right-handed batsman faced LA on Opening Day and allowed one run on six hits (with six walks) in four innings. Marquez has been phenomenal with an 8-2 record at Coors Field and an ERA of 3.16 in 16 home starts. He played no part in the Rockies’ 9-8 win at the Nationals last Friday. Marquez struggled, conceding six runs on eight hits with two walks in four innings. Meanwhile, Buehler is a valid NL Cy Young candidate in the league with win percentage (.778), ERA (2.39) and top-three points for WHIP (0.96). But he is coming back from a bad start. Buehler suffered a defeat at the Reds on Friday with three earned runs on six hits from six innings.
Trends: Entering Tuesday night, the Rockies have drawn a team ERA of 4.63 in games played at Coors Field. It is currently ranked fifth best in franchise history.
at issue: Colorado began its final homestand Tuesday night after a 7-2 road trip for the Phillies (3-1), Braves (2-0) and Nationals (2-1). It marked the team’s first victorious road trip of the season.
Thursday: Rockies LHP Kyle Freeland (6-8, 4.50), 1:10 p.m., Dodgers RHP Max Schazer (14-4, 2.08) at ATTRM
Friday: Giants RHP Anthony Descalfani (12-7, 3.23) at Rockies TBD, 6:10 p.m., ATTRM
Saturday: Giants RHP Dominic Lyon (3-4, 1.72) at Rockies TBD at 6:10 pm, ATTRM