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7/19/2010: Ubaldo Redman? - After Jonathan Herrera's first major league home run capped a four-run comeback in the 8th for Colorado Monday night, Donnie Murphy's pinch-hit 2-run shot won it for the Marlins in the bottom of the ninth. Florida topped the Rockies 9-8 as Ubaldo Jimenez allowed six runs (four earned) in 5.1 innings to see his season ERA rise to 2.38. While that mark would lead the American League, it is only good for fourth-best in the senior circuit. Ubaldo's ERA over his last seven starts is 5.20, and he suddenly seems as good of a candidate for the Mark Redman Award as he does the Cy Young. The Colorado comeback did preserve his 15-1 record, however.
The Greinke-Olivo Saga Continues - When a pitcher has a bad outing, you shrug it off. Get lit up by the Colorado Rockies, and you definitely let it go. Even for a Cy Young Award winner, a bad outing is part of the game.
But when a dominant pitcher gets tagged for eight runs in less than four innings against the team his old catcher plays for, you know whatís going on.
Updating a story we've been following all year, Colorado Rockies catcher Miguel Olivo had the day off on Sunday as the Rockies faced the Kansas City Royals, his old team, and reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Zack Greinke. But Olivo probably didnít sit this game out; Olivo almost certainly played the role of "special assistant to the Manager" for this one, sitting right next to Rockies manager Jim Tracy and giving him everything he knows about his former teammate.
Olivo Five, Kansas City Zero. The on-going Miguel Olivo/Zack Greinke/Ubaldo Jimenez saga took centerstage last night as all three players were in action for the Rockies and Royals. In Colorado, the Rockies scored 11 runs in the first three innings in a laugher against the Arizona Diamondbacks, but the Rockies were laughing more because of their pitching than their hitting. Jimenez threw 95 pitches over six scoreless innings, allowing two hits and two walks while striking out six. Jimenez also ran his consecutive scoreless innings streak to 22.1 innings.
In addition to attending to his catcher duties, Olivo also went 1-for-2 with two RBI and a walk, and is now hitting .319.
Meanwhile, Zack Greinke enjoyed his best outing of the season, throwing seven shutout innings, allowing six hits, walking none, and striking out five. Unfortunately, it took Greinke 119 pitches to get through the five innings, and his reliever Josh Rupe promptly gave up three runs in the eighth inning as the Royals fell to the Mariners, 3-2.
It looks as though it will be Miguel Olivo, and not Zack Greinke, who will be winning consecutive Cy Young Awards this season.
4/17/10: First No-Hitter In Rockies History - For the first decade-plus of baseball in Colorado, it didn't appear that the Rockies would ever find a pitcher who could finish in the top-10 in ERA, much less contend for a Cy Young Award.
Things have changed. Ubaldo Jimenez, who might just have the best stuff of any starter in baseball, threw the first no-hitter in Colorado Rockies history today, albeit on the road in Atlanta. Jimenez needed 128 pitches to blank the Atlanta Braves, as his command was spotty in the early innings. That led to six walks through the first five frames. Jimenez faced the minimum in the final four frames, as he pitched exclusively from the stretch there on out to seal the deal and immortalize himself in baseball history. His fastball was still hitting 98 mph in the ninth inning, and his breaking pitches were filthy.
Oh, and do you know who caught the no-no? None other than Miguel Olivo, who caught 31 of Zach Greinke's 33 starts in Greinke's breakout season. --KG
2010 Colorado Rockies Preview
3/11/10: Helton Seeks One-Teamer Status - It has become rare for a baseball player to stay with one major league team for his entire career and even rarer for him to turn down money, but it appears that Todd Helton has done both. In signing a two-year, $9.9 million contract for the 2012 and 2013 seasons, Helton has taken the high road. His option buyout alone in 2012 would have been $4.6 million; even making the major league minimum with another team would have put Helton over the $4.9 million he is now scheduled to make that year. Helton has also deferred a significant portion of the money he would have made in 2010 and 2011.
Four more guaranteed seasons with the Rockies makes Helton a serious threat for 3,000 hits, 400 homers, 1,500 runs and RBI, and 650 doubles. The deferred money makes him a serious threat to win his first World Series ring sometime in the next four years.
7/23/09: Helton Keeps Beltin' Two-Baggers - Todd Helton, a major reason the Colorado Rockies would be in the playoffs if the season were to end today, knocked out his much-anticiplated 500th career double last night. Helton became the 50th player ever to reach that total, and did so at the relatively young age of 35. Helton is going to breeze past 600 career two-baggers and could easily usurp Craig Biggio for fifth on the all-time list before it is all said and done. --KG
4/09/09: Thank You! You May Go Now - After tossing six innings of one-run, four-hit, one-walk, six-strikeout ball in hitter-friendly Chase Field, Franklin Morales was sent down to Triple-A. This was a premeditated move to get Jason Hammel, who was recently acquired from the Rays, onto the 25-man roster. Will Morales get re-activated when the Rockies need a fifth starter on April 21st? Possibly not, because the Rockies plan to activate ex-Red Matt Belisle next week. --KG
4/05/09: Right Size, Wrong Shape - Jason Hammel, who was out of minor league options,
was traded to the Colorado Rockies today. While this ostensibly follows
Asher's edict of trading some of the Rays' excess pitching, it really doesn't,
because they get minor league pitcher Aneury Rodriguez back in return.
Rodriguez ranked 14th among Scout.com's top 20 prospects for the Rockies,
but does nothing to bolster Tampa's still-questionable offense. Hammel
figures to be used as a swingman in Colorado --KG
3/26/09: Worst Hitter Ever? - Ubaldo Jimenez may well be the worst hitting pitcher in baseball history. He has had 94 major league at-bats, exactly half of which have come at Coors Field. Nevertheless, Jimenez has never enjoyed an extra base hit, owning a career battting and slugging average of .064. At this point, if the first base coach waved Jimenez to second, he might think the coach was just loosening up his shoulder. --KG
12/16/08: Fantasy Alerts - Any time the Colorado Rockies are involved
in a trade, the fantasy baseball ramifications are intense. Matt Holliday
and his .803 career road OPS transforms from a third-roundish draft pick into a
solid May waiver-wire pickup. 23-year old Carlos Gonzalez and his .813 minor
league OPS is suddenly a must-own in keeper leagues. Greg Smith - whose
4.84 FIP translared into a 4.16 ERA in Oakland, went from a handy spot starter
to someone to be avoided like Jason Johnson. --KG
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