Colorado Rockies Week Two Review: April 13-19

Charlie Blackmon and his beard each had good weeks last week. Photo Credit: Lisa Blumenfield – Getty Images North America

Although it ended on a bit of a sour note, the Colorado Rockies; 3-3 road trip in week two is nothing to be upset about. They held their own and now have a chance to gain some ground at Coors Field. Here’s a look back at week two.

Week Record: 3-3

Season Record: 7-5 (3rd in NL West, 2 GB of LAD)

Monday, April 13 – Colorado Rockies (2) at San Francisco Giants (0)
W – Butler (1-0)      L – Heston (1-1)       S – Betancourt (1)
Players of the game:
DJ LeMahieu – 3 for 4
Justin Morneau – 2 for 4, 2B
Rafael Betancourt – IP,  0 R, 2 K, S

Tuesday, April 14 – Colorado Rockies (4) at San Francisco Giants (1)
W – Oberg (1-0)       L – Hudson (0-1)     S – Ottavino (1)
Players of the game:
Corey Dickerson – 3 for 4, 3B, RBI
Christian Bergman – 4 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 4 K
Adam Ottavino – IP, 0 R, 3 K, S

Wednesday, April 15 – Colorado Rockies (4) at San Francisco Giants (2)
W – Matzek (1-0)     L – Lincecum (0-1) S – Ottavino (2)
HR – Arenado (3)
Players of the game:
Tyler Matzek – 6 IP, 5 H, ER, BB, 3 K
Nolan Arenado – 1 for 4, HR, 3 RBI
Adam Ottavino – IP, 0 R, 2 K, S

After a three game sweep in San Francisco, their second consecutive road sweep to start the season, the Rockies were flying high. A 7-2 record had them in first place in the NL West, the offense looked very good, the bullpen looked fantastic, and the starting pitching, while shaky, was doing enough to keep them in the game. The 6-0 road start was the best in franchise history and newly appointed closer Adam Ottavino was just about as dominant as you can be, notching five strikeouts and a weak grounder to second base as he worked back-to-back 1-2-3 innings to pick up his first two saves of the season. The Rockies also got a quality start from Tyler Matzek, a strong outing from Christian Bergman as a spot starter, and what is going to be a strong candidate for catch of the year from Nolan Arenado (more on that catch coming). Things were looking good as the club headed to Los Angeles.

Thursday, April 16 – Day off

Friday, April 17 – Colorado Rockies (3) at Los Angeles Dodgers (7)
W – Kershaw (1-1)   L – Kendrick (1-2)
HR – Tulowitzki (1), Blackmon (1)
Players of the game:
Charlie Blackmon – 1 for 4, HR, 2 RBI
Troy Tulowitzki – 2 for 4, HR, RBI
Scott Oberg – 1 1/3 IP, H, 0 R, K

Saturday, April 18 – Colorado Rockies (3) at Los Angeles Dodgers (6)
W – Greinke (2-0)   L – Lyles (1-1)           S – Peralta (3)
HR – LeMahieu (1)
Players of the game:
DJ LeMahieu – 1 for 3, HR, 2 RBI
Rafael Betancourt – IP, H, 0 R, 2 K
Troy Tulowitzki – 1 for 4, RBI

Sunday, April 19 – Colorado Rockies (0) at Los Angeles Dodgers (7)
W – McCarthy (2-0)  L – Butler (1-1)
Players of the game:
Charlie Blackmon – 2 for 3, BB
Christian Bergman – 2 2/3 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 K
Eddie Butler – 5 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, BB, 4 K

For as well as the series in San Francisco went, the series in Los Angeles went equally poor. There was a feeling that it was going to be a tough series with reigning NL MVP and Cy Young award winner Clayton Kershaw starting game one followed by fellow ace Zack Greinke in game two. The offense was actually able to manage three runs off both pitchers, but starters Kyle Kendrick and Jordan Lyles were unable to keep the team in the game, giving runs right back to the Dodgers every time the Rockies scored. Game three of the series, unfortunately, was even worse. The 7-0 loss marked the worst loss of the young season for the Rockies as they were held to just four singles on the day offensively. Eddie Butler had a decent start, allowing two earned runs in five innings, but reliever Scott Oberg was torched for five runs (three earned) and three home runs in just a third of an inning. You would have to imagine that his days in a Rockies uniform are numbered. The Rockies have now lost nine straight games at Dodger Stadium.

Despite the ugly end to the week, it’s important to remember that the season is a marathon, not a sprint, and the Rockies really aren’t in that bad of shape. The club is 7-5 overall, despite playing nine of their first 12 games away from the friendly confines of Coors Field, and will be getting back staff ace Jorge De La Rosa next week. He will hopefully provide some stability in the rotation and take some of the pressure off of a bullpen that has been overworked in the first 12 games.

Now, it’s time to take a look at the Rockies player and pitcher of the week in week two. You can find a running leaderboard of the players of the week on the right side of the screen.

Rockies position player of the week: DJ LeMahieu – 19 PA, .438/.500/.625, 208 wRC+, HR, 3 RBI

It was a tough week for Rockies hitters with all six games coming on the road in pitcher friendly parks, several against great starting pitchers as well. Despite that, DJ LeMahieu was able to be productive and have a great week hitting toward the bottom of the order. His home run was his first of the season and it came against Zack Greinke of the Dodgers, a great pitcher who tends to not allow many home runs. LeMahieu also continued to display the excellent defense that won him a Gold Glove in 2014, as evidenced here:

Longest Rockies home run of the week: DJ LeMahieu – 412 feet

This home run isn’t as impressive as the one we saw from Carlos Gonzalez last week, but it’s the fourth longest Rockies home run of the season and it came off Zack Greinke, so it’s still impressive. There unfortunately is no embeddable video available, so you can watch LeMahieu’s home run here.

Ridiculous over-the-shoulder-while-falling-into-the-tarp-catch of the week:

So, remember a while back when Derek Jeter made that running catch into the stands at Yankee Stadium and became the best player in the history of baseball? This catch is better than that one, and will be just about impossible to pass for catch of the year. Enjoy!

Rockies pitcher of the week: Christian Bergman – 2 appearances, 1 start, 6 2/3 IP, 8 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 8 K

Pitcher of the week this week ended up being pretty difficult, as there weren’t many great options. There were no starters who stood out and the only reliever who may have had a case was Adam Ottavino, though I would’ve had a hard time giving it to him for pitching just two innings all week. Ultimately I went with Christian Bergman. He filled in admirably in a spot start against San Francisco, throwing four scoreless innings before handing it over to the bullpen, then saved the bullpen yesterday against the Dodgers, eating up 2 2/3 more scoreless innings and preventing the Rockies from having to use up another bullpen arm before the start of their series with San Diego. He wasn’t flashy, but he got the job done and did exactly what the team asked of him. For that, he earns Rockies pitcher of the week. Here are the highlights from the game he started back on April 14:

That’s it for week two in review. Make sure to take a look ahead at week three of the regular season and don’t forget to subscribe, like View from the Rooftop on Facebook, follow on Twitter, and check back on Friday, April 24, as I take a look at another way to make the Rockies better.

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