Rockies Have to Prove They Can Play With the Big Boys Rest of the Way

The Rockies have played themselves back into the NL West race.

They have done it the hard way.

Dates Opp W L
June 29-July 1 at LAD 2 1
July 2-4 SF 3 0
July 6-8 Sea 2 1
July 10-12 Ari 2 1
July 13-15 at Sea 3 0
July 20-22 at Ari 2 1

The returned home on Sunday night, prepared to open a two-game series against the defending world champion Houston Astros at Coors Field on Tuesday night having won a franchise record six consecutive series against teams with a winning record. They went 14-4 during that stretch, winning five of six from the Mariners, four of six from the Diamondbacks, two of three from the Dodgers at Dodger Stadium, and sweeping three games from the Giants.

That, however, is just the start of what will be an even more challenging finish to the season. With 63 games remaining to play, the Rockies have 18 of their final 20 series against teams that are currently .500 or better.

The only exceptions are two series -- one home and one away -- against the Padres.  They have two other series with teams that are .500 -- two games at the Angels, and the season-ending three-game visit to Coors Field by the Nationals.

Rockies Are Facing A Winning Hand

Date Opponent W-L Standing
Tues-Wed vs. Astros 66-36 1st ALW
Fri-Sun vs. Athletics 57-43 3rd ALW
Mon-Aug. 2 at Cardinals 50-49 4th ALC
Aug. 3-5 at Brewers 56-45 2nd NLC
Aug. 6-8 vs. Pirates 51-49 3rd NLC
Aug. 9-12 vs. Dodgers 55-44 1st NLW
Aug. 14-15 at Astros 66-36 1st ALW
Aug. 16-19 at Braves 53-43 2nd NLE
Aug. 21-23 vs. Padres 41-61 5th NLW
Aug 24-26 vs. Cardinals 50-49 4th ALC
Aug 27-28 at Angels 50-50 4th ALW
Aug 30-Sept.2 at Padres 41-61 5th NLW
Sept 3-5 vs. Giants 51-50 4th NLW
Sept 7-9 vs. Dodgers 55-44 1st NLW
Sept 10-13 vs. D-Backs 54-46 2nd NLW
Sept. 14-16 at Giants 51-50 5th NLW
Sept. 17-19 at Dodgers 55-44 1st NLW
Sept 21-23 at D-Backs 54-46 2nd NLW
Sept 24-27 vs. Phillies 55-43 1st NLE
Sept 28-30 vs. Nationals 49-49 3rd NLE

There is, however, a benefit in that the Rockies have 35 of their final 63 games at Coors Field. Don't get misled by the fact they are only 23-23 at home this year. The fact they were able to get back to .500 at home by the All-Star Break is an accomplishment in itself. 

The Rockies have won 12 of their last 15 games at Coors Field, and they have done it primarily because of a strong effort from the pitching staff. Rockies pitchers have a 3.60 ERA in those 15 games.

Getting Comfortable at Home

Date Opp W Sv IP H R ER HR BB SO
6/19/2018 NYM W 0 9 9 8 6 0 4 10
6/20/2018 NYM W 1 9 13 8 8 0 9 6
6/21/2018 NYM W 1 9 11 4 4 1 4 6
6/22/2018 Mia W 0 9 10 3 1 1 1 14
6/23/2018 Mia L 0 9 9 6 6 2 4 9
6/24/2018 Mia L 0 9 12 8 7 1 4 11
7/2/2018 SF W 1 9 5 2 2 1 1 5
7/3/2018 SF W 0 9 6 1 1 0 2 4
7/4/2018 SF W 1 9 3 0 0 0 3 10
7/10/2018 Ari L 0 9 8 5 5 3 7 10
7/11/2018 Ari W 0 9 6 2 2 1 3 10
7/12/2018 Ari W 0 9 7 1 1 0 2 7
7/13/2018 Sea W 1 9 12 7 7 0 4 7
7/14/2018 Sea W 1 9 5 1 1 0 1 8
7/15/2018 Sea W 0 9 9 3 3 0 1 8
ERA 3.60 12-3 6 135 125 59 54 10 50 125

A key, manager Bud Black said during the weekend, is to become most consistent in throwing strikes. The Rockies definitely walk fewer batters in wins than losses.

Winning Ways

Total W L Sv BSv G IP H R ER HR BB SO ERA AVG OBP
Total 53 46 32 17 99 879 866 489 462 111 343 835 4.73 0.258 0.33
In Wins 53 0 32 5 53 482 380 148 135 36 156 469 2.52 0.218 0.284
In Losses 0 46 0 12 46 397 486 341 327 75 187 366 7.41 0.302 0.378

The Rockies do have the challenge of home games being played at Coors Field, but ranking eighth in the NL in walks issued adds to the problem, and plays into the fact they have allowed the second highest average and second highest ERA in the National League. Both of those factors are due in part to high walk totals, which creates more pressure situations for pitchers.

Who's In Control

Team BB Team AVG Team ERA
Dodgers 274 Reds 0.267 Reds 4.81
Phillies 288 Rockies 0.258 Rockies 4.73
Nationals 289 Padres 0.256 Marlins 4.72
D-Backs 316 Pirates 0.253 Mets 4.31
Pirates 316 Marlins 0.251 Pirates 4.24
Giants 333 Giants 0.251 Giants 3.98
Padres 340 Cardinals 0.246 Cardinals 3.95
Rockies 343 Phillies 0.242 Nationals 3.89
Reds 352 Nationals 0.24 Braves 3.87
Cardinals 352 D-Backs 0.238 Phillis 3.84
Brewers 356 Dodgers 0.236 Cubs 3.7
Braves 373 Cubs 0.234 Brewers 3.7
Marlins 393 Brewers 0.232 D-Backs 3.68
Cubs 424 Braves 0.232 Dodgers 3.46
Tracy RingolsbyComment