The Colorado Rockies find themselves in the midst of an 11-game losing streak versus the Los Angeles Dodgers and have since fallen to an even 3-3 record on their current road trip.
Regardless of what has transpired so far on the trip, the Rockies are presented with a prime opportunity to finish their current nine-game homestand on a positive note.
The Rockies are set to square off against National League West rival the San Francisco Giants in a three-game set at Oracle Park beginning Monday.
The series versus San Francisco is the last leg of a three-series divisional road trip. The Rockies are currently just one game above .500 against teams within the division this season, posting a 16-15 record.
The current road trip has been a tale of two cities with the Rockies defeating the Arizona Diamondbacks handily in three straight and then heading to Hollywood to get swept off the stage for three consecutive games against the Dodgers. That included three consecutive walk-offs for LA.
The Giants have played .500 ball in their last 10 games and have had the Rockies number so far this season, owning four wins in six games played.
Ahead are takeaways from the upcoming series.
Pitching needs to hold strong
The Colorado Rockies starting rotation has been dismal for a majority of this season. However, despite their struggles the club’s starting five have begun to put together a solid stretch of outings as of late.
Colorado’s starting pitchers have sealed four quality starts and a 2.37 ERA in the first five games of the west coast swing.
Jon Gray will take the ball in Game One against the Giants and will look to start the series off on a strong note. Gray has pitched to a 7-5 record and 4.18 earned run average this season. He’s been one of the steady arms within the rotation and is one of just two starters that remain from Colorado’s Opening Day roster.
Jeff Hoffman had been up and down in his time with the Rockies so far this season, but due to a glut of injuries, Colorado opted to demote Hoffman to Triple-A Albuquerque, recalling Garrett Hampson in the process. It’s unknown who will start on Tuesday. Hoffman is a candidate as well as Chi Chi Gonzalez.
German Marquez is penciled in to take the hill in the series finale and will look to follow up his masterful performance in Los Angeles in which he pitched eight innings of one-run ball. Marquez has been the frontman of the Rockies rotation this season, pitching to a 7-3 record and 4.32 earned run average.
Offense needs to continue to slug
The Rockies have scored an average of five runs per game so far this road trip, and that trend will need to continue.
Since May 1, the Rockies have averaged just over six runs per game, the highest mark in the majors. Colorado is hitting .292 (493-for-1688) collectively over that span while gaining contributions all throughout the lineup.
Ian Desmond has been sensational as of late, batting .386 (32-for-83) with 10 doubles and five home runs since May 26 which is tied for the third-highest average in the National League. Additionally, Desmond has reached base safely in 13 of his last 15 games played.
Also, Nolan Arenado, Charlie Blackmon and David Dahl all rank within the top-10 of batting average around the league.
Rockies have to weather the storm
Colorado has been presented with a spruce of injuries as of late.
Things started to unravel when Trevor Story was placed on the 10-day injured list after he sprained his right thumb in Colorado’s series versus Arizona. While Story is progressing back from injury, there are still a few hurdles he needs to jump before he is cleared for a return.
Additionally, Arenado has been dealing with a bruised left big toe, Desmond is dealing with an injury of some sort, and Blackmon has yet to skip a beat since returning from the injured list.
The Rockies are relying on youngsters Ryan McMahon, Brendan Rodgers and Hampson to hold steady while the team recuperates.