Sunday, June 08, 2008

A Comeback and a Coors Return

At last, something worth reporting. I did finally make it back to Coors for a game last night for the first time in about 10 months (or 9 months give or take a week or two). My last game in person was August 24, my birthday, against the Nats, and then a whole lot of stuff happened. A lot of it was amazing and thrilling (21 Days, the Rockies' run to the pennant) and a lot of it was atrocious and terrible (the World Series, most of 2008 in general). However, the crap took a reprieve last night, and I actually enjoyed myself thoroughly. This after I had to stop watching their games during the latest incarnation of the Road Trip from Hell, this one a 2-8 swing through Philadelphia, Chicago, and LA. Some of the lowlights on this trip involved being blown out 20-5 by the Phillies and blowing a 9-1 lead against the Cubs (yes, 9-1. And that's the last I will say about that. Repress, ye all, repress). I kind of had a feeling before the trip started that it was going to be a disaster, and was unfortunately right. At least they managed to win the last two games against LA, and coming home, actually managed to pull off a stirring comeback against the Brewers, who had won 9 of 10 coming in. Down 4-1 in the eighth, the Rockies actually resembled themselves from last year and strung together a five-run rally. Highlighted with a Todd double, an Atkins two-run triple, and the big blow, a Hawpe two-run homer (and off a lefty) they managed to win 6-4. (Fuentes didn't actually blow it. Amazing, I know).

(I feel obliged to mention that of course as soon as I start writing good things about them, Francis goes back to sucking and is currently in a 1-0 hole in the first with one out, a guy on second, and a 3-0 count on Prince Fielder. Actually, scratch that, he just walked Fielder. Never MIND).

Anyway, at least last night was fun. They were giving out Tulo bobbleheads, and my sister and I met up with my friend Nikki and her mom to enjoy the game from sect. 148, in pretty much exactly the same seats we purloined when we snuck down to the field last July 4th. We watched Greg Reynolds secure both his first major league victory (4 hits, 2 runs in 6 innings, attakid) and major league hit (a double down the right-field line. He was IMMEDIATELY erased when Willy T, failing as usual, popped into a double play, but the effort was nice. He also got a shaving cream pie to the face later, but we missed that part). Meanwhile, Hawpe, who just got back from an injury rehab assignment, blasted a grand slam in the first inning, followed one pitch later by a monster Iannetta homer. In the fifth inning, Ian Stewart hit a ball to Boulder (actually, the third deck) for his second big-league homer, and despite the fact that I absolutely freaked the fuck out when it happened, Jorge de la Rosa did not blow it in the seventh. Nor did Jason Grilli in the eighth. (Yes, I swear, these are the kinds of "relief" we have in the pen right now). What was fun was that Taylor Buchholz got to pitch the ninth, which may be the last time we see him for quite a while now that The Viz (he of the 27.00 ERA) is back, and Hurdle, being the genius he is, has announced his intent to give The Viz more innings. Apparently Bucky's 1.67 ERA has escaped him. Most things do. Poor Bucky, he'll have to go sit back in the locked bathroom with Iannetta.

Speaking of Iannetta, can you guess which of these two stat lines belongs to our starting catcher:

A) .289/6/20/.358/.577/.935
B) .221/2/15/.260/.338/.599

If you guessed A), as most rational people would, you'd be wrong. Nope, Yorvit Torrealba, aka B) must possess incriminating photos of Hurdle or something to keep being named the starter. There was already enough clamor to replace Torrealba with Iannetta last year even when Iannetta was struggling too, and now that he's hitting very well, it's getting even more excruciating to watch him lose time to a generally inferior player. AND we have Yorvit another year. Groan.

Help, however, may be on the way. Holliday went 4/4 last night on his rehab assignment with the Sky Sox, Tulo should be back in another few weeks, Barmes won't be far behind, and hopefully Jason Hirsh will make it back as well so we don't have to have Glendon Rusch (yes, I'm serious) start another game for us. Jeff Francis sucks, so does Manny Corpas, and Aaron Cook is really the only outstanding starter we have. A four-game win streak, modest as it is, of course has everyone hoping they've figured something out, which of course is not very likely, but hey. At least I got a Tulo bobblehead.