Ending a long dry spell, the Rockies swept the visiting Miami Marlins in a 3-game series over the weekend which extended their string of wins to four in a row. That’s the longest streak the Rockies have enjoyed since an eight-game run from May 26 to June 2.
To begin the week, they hosted the Arizona Diamondbacks, losing the first two games but snatching a 7-6 win in Wednesday’s finale when Nolan Arenado hit a 2-run walk-off homer.
After a welcome day off on Thursday, the Rockies series with the visiting Marlins began on Friday night with an outstanding performance by starter Jon Gray, who held them scoreless for an impressive eight innings. The Marlins starter Sandy Alcantara was also tough, holding the Rockies to 2 runs in his 7 innings of work. The Rockies won 3-0.
Saturday’s rematch featured another fine pitching performance, this time by German Marquez, who earned his 12th win of the season, allowing only 2 runs in 5 innings. But the fireworks in this 11- 4 win were ignited by the Rockies hitters with a surge of home runs by Trevor Story, Charlie Blackmon, Ian Desmond and Ryan McMahon. Doubling down, second baseman McMahon hit 2 home runs, the 16th and 17th of his first full season.
As a matter of fact, this was a week highlighted by his long balls. In the Diamondback series he hit a solo home run on Monday night and a 3-run homer in Wednesday night’s win. In the series with the Marlins, McMahon launched a crucial 2-run homer in Friday night’s 3 – 0 win., then added two solo homers in Saturday night’s offensive explosion.
In Sunday’s finale, Peter Lambert continued to settle into his role as a starter, limiting the Marlins to 3 runs in 6 innings, but the Rockies trailed 3-2. In the 8th inning Nolan Arenado ripped a 2-run homer, his second of the game, that gave the Rockies a 4-3 lead. It was Nolan’s 30th home run, which makes him only the third player in major league history to hit 30 or more home runs in the first five seasons of their career.
Closer Scott Oberg would ordinarily be called on to get the final outs in the ninth inning, but he had been sidelined by a blood clot in his arm, which required immediate hospitalization. Wade Davis, the man who Oberg had replaced as closer was brought in to clinch the victory but once again he faltered, allowing 3 runs that gave the Marlins a 6-4 lead. The Rockies bounced back with 2 runs in the bottom of the ninth to send the game into extra innings. Reliever Carlos Estevez held the Marlins scoreless in the 10th inning. In the bottom of the inning, the Rockies loaded the bases and clinched a walk-off 7-6 win when substitute infielder Garrett Hampson hit a soft single to left field.
It’s going to be tough to continue this winning streak as the Rockies will head back to Arizona this week for their final season series with the Diamondbacks. They’ll then travel to St Louis for a four-game weekend set at Busch Stadium with the St. Louis Cardinals who are currently battling the Chicago Cubs for the top spot in the Central Division.
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