Flashback to the Colorado Rockies’ home opener. The stands were filled and the expectations were high. After back-to-back playoff berths, a third was thought to be an easy bet.

Entering Coors Field was the Los Angeles Dodgers. Fresh off their sixth consecutive division title, the Rockies had an early chance to make a statement against the powerhouse.

Instead, the Rockies were swept. The debacle included a drubbing in front of the national ESPN Sunday Night Baseball audience for the first time in over a decade.

Now, with the Rockies’ season in shambles, their series with the rival Dodgers could serve as the end to their hopes, with the first home series of the year serving as merely a preview of what was to come.

Per FanGraphs, the Rockies’ playoff odds sit at 1.2 percent after their latest road trip. Not only are those the worst odds in the National League West, but third-worst in the entire league.

Currently, the club is 49-57 with a whopping 7.5 games separating them from the Nationals for the second Wild Card slot.

With 90 wins being the expected total for playoff teams, the Rockies would have to go 41-15 the rest of the win to reach the mark.

Maybe it’s already over – the next series will tell a lot.

Kyle Freeland, Jon Gray and German Marquez are all set to toe the mound during the series. Before the year, that trio was set to be the leaders, with Tyler Anderson and Chad Bettis buoying the rear.

Now, with the season reaching the dog days of August, those three have seen a mixed bag of results. Combined, they’ve pitched to a 5.03 earned run average in 341.2 innings.

Outside of Gray’s exit with a left calf injury, their best stretch of the year happened on the recent road trip. Each hurler yielded two-or-fewer runs in a combined 17 innings, though only one of the starts resulted in a win.

A quality showing at home is a must for their chances at climbing back into the playoff picture.

At home so far in 2019, the Rockies’ stable of pitchers has registered a 6.75 ERA. The mark includes an inflated 224 extra-base hits allowed across 460 innings.

Asking hitters to put up seven runs per game is a recipe for disaster. Doing so without the help of Nolan Arenado is nearly impossible.

The club’s star third baseman’s recent struggles have been well documented. Since July 15th’s doubleheader against the Giants, Arenado has hit .229 with only two extra-base hits in 48 at-bats.

After his recent off-day to clear his mind, the results have blossomed somewhat with his average bumping up to .273.

For the Rockies to find their footing again, a bounceback from their leader is a necessity. The continued home dominance of Charlie Blackmon is needed as well.

So far, Blackmon has hit a league-leading .415 at home. In that same 38-game sample, he’s also racked up 16 home runs and a 1.318 OPS.

In the series, the Rockies’ offense will be tasked with facing both Kenta Maeda and Hyun-Jin Ryu, with the third starter still to be determined.

For his career, Maeda has routinely stumped the Rockies. In 18 appearances (11 starts) against the club, he has a 2.41 ERA – by far his lowest against any team that’s seen him double-digit times.

In 2019, Maeda has continued the trend with three starts against the Rockies in which he’s allowed two-or-fewer earned runs.

Conversely, Ryu’s infrequent struggles in a dominant year saw their lowest point against the Rockies at Coors Field. Across four innings in their earlier meeting, he allowed a season-high seven earned runs in only four innings.

On the year, Ryu’s 1.74 ERA leads the majors. Without his implosion against the Rockies earlier in the year, that mark falls to a miniscule 1.29.

The two starters, along with a top-flight offense will once again oppose a Rockies’ roster searching for answers.

If they fail to find them now, the hopes of competing for a spot in the postseason will have to move to 2020.