It appears there’s just no stopping the Arizona Diamondbacks, especially for the scuffling rotation of the Colorado Rockies.
Another wayward start paved the way for an offensive outburst from the Rockies’ division rival in a 9-2 loss. It was the sixth time this year that the hosts have allowed eight or more runs by an opposing team, with their latest blunder ensuring they’d remain winless in those instances.
Ahead are takeaways from a beatdown on Blake.
The slide continues for Freeland
A 2.85 earned run average from a Rockies’ pitcher is hard to envision and even harder to maintain. The lesson is all too familiar for Kyle Freeland.
The southpaw hit a low point Saturday night, allowing eight earned runs across six innings, including three home runs. He’s now up to seven starts on the year and has allowed five or more runs in three of them.
“Tonight, there was a few too many up and out over the plate,” Manager Bud Black said.
Freeland’s command has often abandoned him this year, producing ugly results. Without a fastball that blows hitters away, his misses have produced immense trouble:
— Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) May 5, 2019
Freeland’s final pitch chart once again featured far more middle-of-the-plate offerings than Black and company would prefer:
The outing continued a troubling trend for the Rockies. As a team, their rotation has allowed the most earned runs in the entire National League, trailing only the Chicago White Sox on per-game average in the majors.
Outside of German Marquez and Jon Gray, there has been minimal run-stopping success doled out to the arms of the Rockies, a statement that would’ve induced doubtful laughter prior to the season.
Luke weaves through Rockies’ lineup
Based on his past appearances at 20th and Blake, it’d be hard to envision Diamondbacks’ starter Luke Weaver coming into his latest start with any confidence. Instead, he bypassed his previous 20.25 ERA en route to a quality outing.
Through the first three frames, Weaver was perfect. Of the nine batters he faced, four went down on a punchout, including the side in the third. After a pair of doubles to start off the fourth broke up his bid for history, Weaver once again settled down with a pair of perfect frames.
The four-pitch arsenal of Weaver left the Rockies guessing all night. The ability to hurl a fastball that peaked at 97.2 miles per hour, followed by a mid-80s changeup gave Weaver the green light through the entire lineup. His efforts included an 0-for-6 combined line from Daniel Murphy and Nolan Arenado.
He finished with a season-high seven innings and allowed only one earned run on three hits while striking out eight.
The Diamondbacks are going to be a nuisance this year
It appears the definition of “seller” is in need of swift adjustment through the season’s first month. Both the Diamondbacks and Seattle Mariners were said to be giving up on their year, yet, they’ve thrived.
For the former, they began by trading franchise cornerstone, Paul Goldschmidt. Adding onto their departures, both A.J. Pollock and Patrick Corbin also signed elsewhere.
Narrowing down the club’s blockbuster trade to a one-game sample, their front office appears to have the inside track to success as both Weaver and Carson Kelly made a grand impact in the win.
Weaver’s aforementioned start played the role of catalyst, while Kelly’s first career home run, a 428-foot shot, padded his 2-for-2 night at the plate that included a pair of walks.
The win was just the latest by a streaking Diamondbacks’ club that led the NL in both extra-base hits (133) and slugging percentage (.468) entering the second game of the series.
The Rockies will be forced to pick their poison as their year goes on, with both NL West clubs playing in a bonafide hitter’s park.
It won’t be easy.
Almonte solid in first game back in the majors
The Rockies announced, prior to their latest loss, that Harrison Musgrave was headed to the 10-day injured list with Yency Almonte replacing him on the 25-man roster.
Almonte pitched a pair of scoreless frames in his second stint of 2019, juxtaposing his first chance. In three appearances after his call-up earlier in the year for the injured Tyler Anderson, he struggled to the tune of a 6.23 ERA in 4.1 innings.
The length of his stay with the Rockies has yet to be determined, but a day off on Monday gives the club time to name a fifth starter for later in the week. Early indications were favorable for the youngster.