Sunday, August 24, 2014

Game of the Day (8/23/14)

Rockies 5, Marlins 4 (13). Colorado's Jordan Lyles and Miami's Tom Koehler both entered this season with less than 400 major league innings and never having had an ERA+ over 90. The difference, such as it is, is that Lyles is a still-relatively-salvageable 23, while Koehler is 28. (On the other hand, they've both pitched acceptably if not spectacularly this season.)

Giancarlo Stanton walked in the top of the first, which made him the only runner to reach in the inning. Garret Jones and Marcel Ozuna started the second with singles, but Lyles retired the next three Marlins to leave them both on. Koehler allowed his first baserunner in the bottom of the inning when Corey Dickerson singled, but Michael McKenry hit into a double play to end the inning.

Miami opened the scoring in the top of the third when Christian Yelich was hit by a pitch and Stanton doubled him home. Colorado countered in the bottom of the inning, tying the game when Charlie Culberson and DJ LeMahieu singled to put runners at the corners and Lyles hit into a run-scoring double play. Charlie Blackmon then doubled and Brandon Barnes homered to put the Rockies in front, 3-1.

The Marlins got one of the runs back in the fourth. Jarrod Saltalamacchia walked with one out, and Adeiny Hechevarria singled him to second. Koehler bunted the runners to second and third, and Yelich and Donovan Solano both drew walks to force in a run. Stanton then struck out to leave the bases loaded. The Rockies threatened in the bottom of the inning on singles by Nolan Arenado and Dickerson, but Koehler retired the next three hitters to leave them on, and Lyles walked Ozuna and allowed a game-tying Saltalamacchia double in the top of the fifth.

Blackmon singled in the bottom of the fifth, but was caught stealing. Miami chased Lyles in the top of the sixth with two-out singles by Stanton and Casey McGehee; Rex Brothers relieved and struck out Jones to leave the go-ahead run in scoring position. Koehler was perfect in the sixth and seventh, and Juan Nicasio retired the Marlins in order in the seventh to keep the tie intact. Boone Logan allowed a leadoff hit to pinch hitter Jordany Valdespin in the eighth, then combined with Adam Ottavino to strike out the side. Bryan Morris gave up a single to Josh Rutledge, then recorded two quick outs before giving way to Mike Dunn, who finished the inning without incident.

LaTroy Hawkins notched the first two outs in the ninth, then allowed three consecutive singles to Ozuna, Saltalamacchia, and Hechevarria, the third of which put Miami in front 4-3. Jeff Baker struck out to end the inning, and Steve Cishek served up a game-tying homer to Dickerson in the bottom of the ninth. McKenry then walked and pinch hitter Drew Stubbs singled, but Cishek retired Rutledge to leave the winning run at second and send the game to extras.

Nick Masset was perfect in the top of the tenth, while Chris Hatcher allowed a leadoff hit to Blackmon before retiring the next three hitters. Masset allowed a single to McGehee and hit Jones with a pitch, but drew a double play ball from Ozuna to help himself escape, and Hatcher tossed a 1-2-3 bottom of the inning. Brooks Brown retired the Marlins in order in the twelfth; Sam Dyson issued a pair of walks (one intentional) in the bottom of the inning before stranding both runners. Matt Belisle was spotless in the top of the thirteenth, and the Rockies ended it against Dyson in the bottom of the inning when Arenado doubled and Dickerson singled him home with the game winner.

This game had quite a lot going on. Miami used six pitchers, which looks tame compared to Colorado's nine. The teams combined to go 4 for 25 with runners in scoring position, despite having eight multi-hit games between them. They each scored a go-ahead or game-tying run in the ninth, and left additional runners in scoring position; after that, there was a runner at second or third in each of the first three extra innings before the Rockies finally ended it in the fourth.

It adds up to be the 19th-best game of 2014 so far, and it's enough to move Miami from second to first-with-a-decent-sized-lead in the excitement race for the season overall, and to push the Rockies into the top 5.

No comments:

Post a Comment