Coming into Friday night’s game, things couldn’t have been more bleak. The Rockies have been playing like garbage. That’s no secret. But, last night, they were given a little dose of medicine called the San Diego Padres. The Friars turned out to be just what the doctor ordered. As of this morning, the Rockies are back in first place and all is right with the world. Earlier today, when I stepped out for a cup of coffee, a little bluebird landed on my shoulder and we whistled a duet as I skipped down the sidewalk.
It’s remarkable how an entire team can be mired in three week long offensive slump. But, it’s even more amazing when they suddenly and inexplicably bust out as a group. Last night’s performance was like a torrential downpour for a fan base that was lost in the Sahara, dying of thirst. In one game, the Rox produced as much offense as their previous five games combined. They racked up sixteen hits and twelve runs — both season highs. More importantly, the Rockies reminded us that, despite their flaws, they are very talented.
While I was watching last night’s game, it occurred to me why myself and other Rockies’ fans have been so upset over this recent swoon. With the Rockies immense talent and terrific start, we were all tricked into thinking that this was going to be an easy year. On April 20th, when the Rockies had the best record in baseball, I was convinced that the franchise’s first NL West title was a foregone conclusion. At that point, it was all feel good stories and purple dinosaurs. No one was prepared for the brutal three week stretch that followed. The surprisingly poor play caused a lot of us to panic — including yours truly. But, it was an overreaction. The reality is that every single team in baseball will have bad stretches during the season. Apparently, this baseball is a tough game.
Granted, the Rox still have a lot of question marks. Whether or not Ty Wigginton can hold down the hot corner remains to be seen, and, obviously, the situation with Ubaldo is very disconcerting. However, despite their recent slumps, Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez are superstars and the Rockies are tough to beat when they produce. As long as they are healthy, Colorado will be in the race.
With that said, one night didn’t turn around the season. They need to build off their success and take care of business against the Padres. The Rockies need to win this series because next week is going to be rough. They have two against the Giants and then take on the first place Phillies in Philadelphia. It would be nice if they had a little momentum heading into this tough four game stretch.
Final thought: I apologize for getting so emotional last week. Admittedly, there has been a profusion of negativity on my part. I’ll try to do better in the future. Of course, if the Rockies average two runs a game for the next three weeks, I can’t make any promises. I’m just hoping that last night was the start of something good.