Saturday, April 30, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 25

1)  Winning formula:  Starter goes 7 inning, followed by Betancourt, followed by Street

2)  Will it ever get warm again?  Boy this April has been miserable for Colorado fans.  Rox must be anxious to get to Arizona later this week...

3)  Todd back in the three hole...I think this is a great move for CarGo.  Hard to believe, but the line up with Helton batting here might actually be the best one Tracy has thrown out there this year.

4)  Rox being a bit more aggressive today has they only had 3 strikeouts.

5)  Has anyone noticed but it seems that the Pirates are perfectly aligned in the field especially up the middle.  There were a huge number of times where I thought it was a hit and yet there was a Pirate.  Either the advance scouts are scary good or maybe Hurdle after years of watching this line up knows a thing or two?

6)  Good to see Hammel finding his way.  Teams with a solid 4th starter have got to be better for it...I just like his approach

Friday, April 29, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 24

1)  Really if I am going to sit and watch a game and it snows I better see a little more effort then what I saw tonight...two day lay off really showed...Correia looked like Cy Young out there tonight...pathetic

2)  With the wind blowing in from right field how do two homeruns make it out?  And two well hit balls from  Helton die in the wind in left field?

3)  How bad is it for CarGo?  He gets a bunt single in the ninth tonight to end an 0-25 stretch...

4)  Thought this was Amezaga first game but alas he is an old man having played 8 seasons and 544 games!  This was by the way his second hit as a Rox, having had one in April 2005 and then subsequently traded to the Pirates that year...

5)  Another 3 K for Fowler...Herrera is getting close to taking over that lead off spot...Fowler has got to get on for this team to click....

6)  Where were the purple jerseys?  Come on Chacin...who by the way pitched well enough to win...8 strikeouts (struck out the side on 10 pitches? in the 5th)...but allowing two solo shots kind of hurts.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 23

1)  Good team? Yikes this team is almost 10 games above .500 and yet our offensive is still limping along.

2)  Two homers from the Toddfather. First multihomer game since 2007.

3)  Rox continue to be aggressive on the basepaths...two stolen bases by Iannetta and Wiggington. 18 for 24 so far this year. In 2010 through 23 games they were 15 for 23 and 2009 they were 21 for 27 (OK maybe not that aggressive, maybe selective?)

4)  No comment on Heartburn Huston...

5)  Dex has scored in 14 of the 23 games he has played.  On  the flip side he has struck out in 18 of those games...

6)  Spilly?  Anyone at home?

7)  Iannetta has 14 walks in 16 games and only 8 hits with two homers...I like Troy Renck's take on twitter today and when runners are on and the pitcher is up next we need hits not walks...

Monday, April 25, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 22

1)  Rox need to save up some of this luck for later in the season.  Cubs four errors lead to four runs and a win.  Rox winning with smoke and mirrors.

2)  Rox get out hit 11 - 4 and still manage to eek out a win.  Sad thing is one of those hits was by the pitcher.  Where did the offense go?  Going to have to lower the mounds again because the year of the pitcher is back!

3)  Rogers struggles but give him credit he didn't implode and kept the Rox in the game so that something good could happen.  He gets win number 3.

4)  11 more strikeouts...last 7 games they have struck out 67 times...thanks Carney!

5)  Guess Castro got up on the wrong side of the bed, three errors in one inning and 0-5 night at the over!

Rox Talk - Week 4

The Week That Was
A 2-4 week against the Giants and Marlins. The Rox currently stand at 14-7. Three game lead in the division. Currently 6-4 at home and 8-3 on the road, the Rox have outscored its opponents 106-86 (expected wins is 12 versus historical wins at 10). On pace for 108 wins with 818 runs scored and 663 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs scored/Runs Against ratio) is 1.23 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

Tough week for the offense this week (batted 0.178 and slugged an anemic 0.281) as they probably faced the second and third best pitching staffs in the National League (Phillies being first).  The starters the Rox faced averaged 13 wins last year (16, 13, 13, 13, 10, 11) and an average WAR of 3.7 (5.1, 2.6, 4.0, 4.3, -0.2, 6.3).  In the previous 15 games they faced average wins of 9 and a WAR of 2.2.  Brutal week and to think they had a chance to be no hit 3 out of the 6 games.  Positive from all of this?  Yeah they had a chance to finish the week at 3-3, had it not been a blown relief appearance on Sunday.  Rox get a break this week going to Chicago and then having Pittsburgh come to Denver.

Coors Canaveral
Found this site the other day, Hit Tracker, and it is full of little sweet home run nuggets.  Too bad it only goes back to 2007 but it is a start.  Some data:

Interesting to see that some of these homers are off some hall of famers!  I give Ryan are time but man he can turn on some pitches...Spilly! Spilly!

Average home run distance from current and past Rox.  Holliday was a monster and for as much grief as we give Iannetta but when he connects...WOW.

What about an infamous stat and how far do our pitchers give up the long ball...

And finally just for my curiosity, when the wind is blowing where do the average homers go? Blowing left to right (7-9) (bullpen balls).  Curious to see the in from left field (I-7) although I can understand out to right (O-9)?

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 21

1) A real pitcher's duel at first. Dueling no hitters through 4 and half and then U-Ball served up a base's loaded triple. At that point I thought the game was over but the Rox clawed back...

2) Fine time for our bullpen to finally blow it...up until today their only losses were in extra innings...

3) How about the top of the 5th when all three outs were fly balls to the left fielder. Also in the top of the third the Marlins struck out the side. Baseball a game of symmetry sometimes just check out the box score.   Rox score three runs on six hits and the Marlins score six runs on three hits...

4)  So I was wondering how often does a team out-hit another team and still lose a game?  Well the results shocked me:

In Rox Losses, the Rox have out-hitted (or equal hit totals) its opponent 294 times (in 1490 losses) - 20%
In Rox Wins, the Rox have been out-hitted (or equaled) by its opponent 403 times (in 1364 wins) - 30%

So Rox have lost a fifth of their games by hitting more than their opponents and have won third of their games by being out-hit by their opponents....

5)  And from the obscure statistics department, today marked Game 21, which in Rox history is not a good game number.  After today's loss they are now 1-18!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 20

1)  A rare win in Florida...while overall the Rox are now 76-77 all time against our expansion brothers we are 29-48 in Miami. 

2)  Another tough night for CarGo...I really wish the papers and radio would stop making excuses for him...bottom line is pitchers are taking a new approach to him and he either needs to make adjustments or sit on the bench and think about it.  This is a big boy need to perform

3)  Hammel played with fire tonight but pitched when he needed to and get the win.  Hopefully he learns from tonight.  Rox are a better team when he is keeping the Rox in play.

4)  Another pinch hit strikeout from Spilly...are bench has been awful this year...pinch hit line so far:
29 plate appearances with two hits and seven K's with a 0.077 batting average...impressive

5)  Small ball Rox wins this year they have 11 sacrifice hits/flies and in losses 6. 

Box Score Bytes - Game 19

1)  Thank you Dex for getting a base hit!  Did not want to be front and center on sportscenter last night!

2)  Last night marked the 17th time in Rox history that they only managed one hit (they have been no hitted twice).  Kind of frightening to think Rox were that close to be no hitted that many times.  Scary thing is while Rox have one no hitter by their pitchers they also only have one one hitter (Jun 6, 2006 thrown at home against Oakland, Jennings, Martin, Fuentes).

3)  Not much else to reveal from last nights matchup.  I did think that Chacin had trouble controlling his pitches due to the air.  His breaking stuff was all over the place...I bet that effects are hitters as well.  Movement must be tough to catch up to...

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 18

1)  Rox finally win one against our nemesis the Giants...after allowing another first inning run, I was a bit concerned that we were going to be swept away today.

2)  Team finally loosened up and attacked at the plate...something that was missing in the first two games.

3)  13 hit day (with 12 strikeouts as well, led by Dex with a whooping 4 whiffs...)

4)  Giants had no answer against the Lefty today...7 innings pitched and 6 strikeouts...nice day for de la Rosa who is now 3-0 for the season.

5)  Betancourt and Street each had two K's each in their innings of work.  Street only threw 13

6)  Nice three hit day from Tulo who is batting 0.343.

7)  Wiggington finally gets some action sending one deep for his first Rox homer and his 1,000 career hit.

8)  Come on CarGo, lighten up a bit, you are holding the bat too tightly...I'll blame it on the was a miserable 3 game set with overcast skies and a cold nasty win...Miami will seem downright balmy this weekend!

9)  How much does is batting average a useless stat?  Rox are 16th overall in the league but are 4th in runs scored...

10) Realize Dex is 4th on the team with 9 RBIs but also leads the team in strikeouts

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 17

1)  Yikes...tough night (cold Colorado April night) to try and get a feel for the ball and to find your spots...U-Ball looked rusty and the Giants took advantage.  After sending 9 men to the plate in the first and throwing 37 pitches, U-Ball settled in, struck out 5 and faced only 14 more batters.  Fantasy players must be very unhappy right about now...

2)  I love Spilly and his attitude but frankly after tonights outing I think it is time to bring someone else in.  He is batting 0.188 and went 0 for 4 tonight with two K's and his second K really hurt tonight because the Rox had made it a 6-3 ball game with runners on 2nd and 3rd.  Base hit in this situation would have made it interesting...time for some young blood...

3)  Tulo and CarGo looked miserable tonight.  They were 0-8 for night and if they feel like they have to carry this team and the team feels like leaving it up to these two then this season is going to go down the tubes pretty quickly.  Someone has to step one did tonight except for Fowler.

4)  By the way what was up with the bottom of the fourth inning?  CarGo flies out on the first pitch he sees and then Tulo takes an oopsy swing on the first pitch sending a dribbler to the pitcher to make out number two.  Really two pitches, two outs, to the heart of the order?  Thankfully Helton took some pitches before grounding out to second.

5)  Smith had a nice pitch hit sacrifice in the bottom of least someone had a productive at bat...

6)  Giants pitchers are good but not this good...4 hits allowed last night and 3 tonight?  If we are this flustered with the World Champions then let's start playing for the Wild Card...

7)  Some nice defensive plays again tonight...especially liked Lopez's basket catch in the 6th

8)  Oh yeah one more thing if Scherholtz had made that play on Dex's double in the first the Rox would have been no hit again though 6 innings...Rox better find their bats tomorrow or they will find themselves 5-5 at home!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 16

1) Hmmm...ahhhh...yeah not how I envisioned the series starting this year. Giants are still the Champs and it would be in the best interest for the Rox to respect that and not got cocky with their April start.

2) Second egg laying game in a stretch of 3 games although really after Rogers gave the Giants an 8 spot the rest of the staff settled in

3) Four hits on a cold yucky night more akin to San Francisco this time of wonder Lincecum felt right at home...especially since his balls were nice and wet

4) Young pups need to take something from Helton's approach...a two hit night that was pretty respectable considering what everyone else did...ughhhh

5) Thanks for playing Mr Stewart but guess what (fingers crossed that the Rox actually do this) are going to get a month in the minors to remind you what a privelege it is to play in the worked for Fowler and Iannetta...

Rox Talk - Week 3

The Week That Was
A 6-1 week against the Mets and Cubs. The Rox currently stand at 12-3. Four game lead in the division. Currently 5-2 at home and 7-1 on the road, the Rox have outscored its opponents 85-59 (expected wins is 10 versus historical wins at 7). On pace for 130 wins with 918 runs scored and 637 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs scored/Runs Against ratio) is 1.44 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

Wow what a start!  Team is certainly clicking on all cyclinders.  The offense, starting pitching, and bullpen have all played a part in making this the best start in franchise history.  Now I don't think this team is that good.  They have had some luck but good teams do make their own breaks but the parts are their for this team to keep it going over the long haul. 

Offensive good things:  Herrera, Tulo, Helton, Smith, and Iannetta.  OK but not great:  Lopez, CarGo, and Fowler.  Red Flags:  Wiggington and Stewart.  At this rate I think Stewart will get sent down and third will go to Lopez and Wiggington especially with Herrera fast start.  But of the three 3rd basemen someone has to click...I hope.

Starting pitching good things:  Chacin, Reynolds, Rogers.  OK but not great:  U-Ball and de la Rosa.  Red Flags:  Hammel.  Hammel has looked awful this April and just looks uncomfortable.  Overall the starters have done what is expected...keep the team in the some innings...and leave it to the bullpen.

Bullpen good things:  Belisle, Betancourt, Linstrom, and Street (sort of although I don't think he ever likes a Save unless he loads the bases).  OK but not great:  Reynolds and Morales.  Red Flags:  Paulino.  Paulino's transition is not going so well...does not come in and close the door...something to work on.

Home Runs, Home Runs
Denver Post had an interesting little tidbit about how the Rox are hitting more home runs this year with runner's on base compared to last year.  Obviously making such a statement 15 games into the year is like saying the Rox are on pace (and believing) they will win 130 games this year.  Chart below shows the percentage of HR hit with runners on versus the total for that season (solid red line is winning percentage for that year).  So for instance in 2010, Rox hit 173 dingers and of those 78 had ducks on the pond and 95 were solo shots.  The average over the 18 years was about 44% so yeah so far in 2011 of the 18 homers hit, 10 have been with runners on.  Do I expect this to continue?  Probably not nor do I believe this is the reason the Rox are 12-3 but it is a nice stat bit.
In doing this study I also looked at two out homers.  To me a two out homer is a gotta be demoralizing to the other team.  Getting so close to that final out and then giving it up...again red line is winning percentage.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 14

1.  As goes the Rox so goes the blogging...I am just drained and need a day off...

Friday, April 15, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 13

1.  What do you do after your most successful road trip in club history...have your starter throw a complete game shut out...

2.  Gosh this team is scary right now...but does it concern anyone that this is only April?  Come on now there are 149 games left...pace yourselfs

3.  By my count that is the 93rd shutout thrown by a Rox pitcher (3.2% of games played in their history).

4.  You know the ball is falling your way when you hit a bases clearing triple and then get to run home on an error...

5.  Hmmm Rox on pace to win 137 games...and score 910 runs...again no U-Ball and a slow starting CarGo 

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 11 and 12

1.  Speechless

2.  In awe....

3.  In my wildest dreams I kept my fingers crossed for a .500 April (which obviously still could occur) but to start the season 10-2?  Wow

4.  @BattingStanceG tweet would suggest in the last 155 at bats Tulo has 22 homers...Ruthesque

5.  MVP of the "team" so far as to be Herrera...because of him things are happening on the base paths...allowing Tulo to be Superman.

6.  Oh and by the way...Herrera hit a home run (2nd career).  Shows you how well the cyclinders are firing right now

7.  Not to be a downer but how will Street respond?  Granted he was 30 pitches into it but does he bounce back?

8.  Thank you Lindstrom...heck of freaking earned your paycheck today.

9.  Curious how the team will respond back at home...too bad there ain't an off day.

10.  Starters have yet to lose a game this year....

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 10

1.  You can't stop Tulo, you can only hope to contain him.  Gotta love this line:
                      5 PA, 3 Hits, 1 HR, 2 Runs, 1 Walk, and a Triple away from a Cycle

2.  Herrera steals two bases off of one Taylor Johnny run

3.  When Rox look back at this stretch they are going to be amazed at the how much their pitchers grunted out some innings when not having their best stuff...Rox are getting awesome relief and timely hitting...all on the road!

4.  Another one run win...that is more like it although it would be nice to have some blow outs so I don't cringe too much

5.  At a record of 8-2, Rox are doing this without really any great starting pitching, no U-Ball, half a hand de la Rosa, sick CarGo, and a bad back Helton...scary to think if we can stay healthy.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 9

Little late on this...I hate traveling for business!

1. Stewart gets a hit!

2. Tulo gets an error...

3.  Rox 3 for 19 with RISP?  And win?

4.  Little Engine that could...J. Herrera...double, stolen base, sac hit.  The man is your 2 hole hitter is Tracy going to keep him out of the lineup?
5.  What is up with Betancourt?  Some good outtings some struggles...maybe Street is wearing off on him

6.  Mets have a pitcher named Beato?  Is that good for a pitcher?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Rox Talk - Week 2

The Week That Was
A 5-1 week against the Dodgers and Pittsburgh. The Rox currently stand at 6-2. One and half game lead in the division. Currently 3-1 at home and 3-1 on the road, the Rox have outscored its opponents 41-27 (expected wins is 5 versus historical wins at 3). On pace for 122 wins with 830 runs scored and 547 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs scored/Runs Against ratio) is 1.52 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

What can you say?  Nice two game sweep of the Dodgers and a good first outting on the road.  Other than that I got nothing.

World of Baseball
1)  Manny
Manny announced his retirement this week after supposedly failing another drug test.  Hard to believe a player is that stupid or so egotastical to think that MLB wouldn't find it again.  To me Manny is all that is good and bad in baseball.  The good was his ability to hit a baseball and the bad was his attitude.  The good was his days winning world championships for the Red Sox and the bad was his quitting on the team that gave him that opportunity.  The good was his goofiness and the bad was his defense.

My first game at Fenway was June 11, 2004 and the Red Sox were playing the Dodgers.  The game was 1-0 in the top of the ninth when Manny made a bone head play in Left allowing the tying run score.  Of course in the bottom Ortiz made up for Manny's mistake but I will always remember how silly Manny looked tyring to catch the ball.  My final memory was him striking out has a Dodger and soon after that being traded.  It is a shame that such a great player will be a footnote in the Hall of Fame.  All the talent in the world and yet not a lot of real world smarts.

2) New York Times Magazine - Phillies Article
Awesome article about the magic that is pitching...

3) Fenway 99th Opening Day
And finally Fenway will celebrate its 100th opening day next year...amazing!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Box Score Byte - Game 8

1.  Love it when your team jumps out to an early lead...not so much when the opposition comes back two inning later to tie it. 

2.  Your byte of the day (data collected from 2006 - 2010):  When leading after the first inning, Rox winning percentage is 0.704, when tied 0.515, and behind 0.312...

3.  Hate to say it but again this team might be better without Helton in the lineup...Herrera batting in the two hole is he had a hit, three walks. and scored twice (winning run my friend!)

4.  Road isn't treating Iannetta very well...hasn't adapted to the road at all

5.  Stewart still hitless...don't know what Rox are going to do with him...can an early season trade be not too far away?  I said here first but Stewart isn't a Rox next year...

6.  Chacin struggle today with command but still got the win...some wins aren't very pretty but you keep your team in the ballgame and hope the cards fall right later in the game

7.  An easy day for Street...3 up, 3 down...maybe the 3 inning affair the other night helped?

8.  Tracy learns from his mistakes...he kept Giambi in later in the game instead of pulling him early.

Box Score Bytes - Game 7

1.  Greg Reynolds had a nice respectable first game after not pitching in the bigs since 2008.  Amazing to think that the Rox are in this position with their top two arms having finger problems and our starters 5A and 5B are providing quality innings...of course we are playing the Pirates...

2.  How often is Tracy going to go with Reynolds and then Reynolds? 

3.  Matt Linstrom looks about as sure of a bet as Street.  No Save is going to be easy this year...

4.  Thankfully Wiggington had a hit which plated 3 Rox and Lansford can smile privately that someone got the message

5.  Game 7 and we have our first Hit By Pitch...
6.  2nd game Helton missed due to back tightness...hate to say it but the team isn't missing too much...I like Herrera in the two spot.  When Helton is in the lineup, where would Herrera play?  Team has depth but can Tracy effectively manage and ensure player's get their swings?

7.  Iannetta finally gets a day off...mystery man Morales gets you couldn't ID him in a lineup?

8.  Rox pinch hitters have been awful so far this year...1/13 with 4 strikeouts...Spilly and Stewart aren't feeling it...Stewart doesn't have a hit by the way!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 6

1.  Hmmm, something about last night reminded me of something, can't quite place it, oh yeah last Friday when Rox lost by one in extra innings...

2.  Rox are 0-2 in one run games, held scoreless for 13 innings, and had multiple chances (heck even had a guy on third with no one out) yet no one could get a lousy single to drive Herrera home.  That my friends is pathetic!

3.  Tulo and CarGo went a combined 0-11 with 4 K's.

4.  Team went 1-15 with Runner's in Scoring Position and had 15 K's...again what did Lansford say during Spring win on the road with key base hits and small ball...

5.  Bullpen went 9 innings, better hope Reynolds goes deep today because bullpen got worked.

6.  Street won't be pitching today after going 3 innings...yikes (although he only threw 27 pitches which is a typical nightmare inning for him ;))  This is only his third outing of his career where he has gone 3 innings (360 appearances)!  And he got to bat too, only his second plate appearance!  Love it when closers hit!  He sent it deep in centerfield...wouldn't it have been cool had he hit one out to win it?

7.  Wonder why Tracy went with Paulino in the 9th rather than Betancourt?  Don't use your best relief until you have a lead when on the road?

8.  Morales always seems to get thrown into an impossible situation and then invariably loses it...

9.  How much did the offensive not contribute to the game?  Offense WPA  -0.884 and Pitching WPA 0.427...

10.  Best quote of the year so far, from Hurdle after yesterday's loss, "I don't know, I'm not a psychologist. I didn't stay at a Holiday Inn Express."

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 5

1.  Rogers was an animal today.  Before today start he had nine career starts with an average game score of 41.  Today he threw a 72.  Maybe he has some Pennsylvania blood because another of his wins last year was in Pittsburgh!

2.  You can't stop Tulo, you can only hope to contain him!  When CarGo and Tulo are hitting be afraid...see data below:

3.  No love for Hurdle...of course on the flip side there was no love for Tracy when he managed the Pirates so there...

4.  Hmm let's see Rox win 7-1 on the road with only 3 strikeouts...him see a theme here?

5.  Finally if only the Rox could travel back in time and play at Forbes Field...

At you can, sort of

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 4

Game 4 Rox Win 7-5

Elberts: Morales (0.112) and Tulo (0.215)
Arikarees: Hammel (-0.111) and Fowler (-0.128)

1. Hammel's new release didn't seem to get worked out during Spring. A work in progress but a win is a win, although I would have given the win to Morales, who by the way did find his location in the Spring.

2. Street? - No comment, I will be amazed if he is closing for the Rox come September...

3. Boo Yeah, Mr he had a nice smirk cleaning the bases of Young'uns like CarGo and Tulo. Love his follow through on home runs and how he whips that bat. Most memorable Helton homer? Had to be that one against LA that started the win streak (if memory serves me...).

4.  Rox have nine doubles this season...pretty good for a team with only 4 games under its belt.

5.  Did someone put us in Bizarro of today Baltimore, KC, and Mets lead their respective divisions...doh

6.  Can we award this year's Gold Glove to Tulo and CarGo?  Man they have played some serious D this year.  CarGo's catch in the 9th saved that game...

7.  Seven more K's, can we get some contact please especially with an 8 game road trip up ahead...

8.  Tracy finishes off his former team.  He is now 12-17 against the Dodgers and next stop is Pittsburgh where he is  8-5 against that former team.  Four game sweep this weekend against Hurdle or does Hurdle's revenge take place?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 3

1.  Fast game, amazing what effective pitchers can do to opposing big  leaguers.

2.  Another game, another lineup.  Tracy sure likes to maneuver, moving Lopez up to 5th spot and dropping Helton to 6th.

3. Tulo's first hit was a big one - 432 feet deep into the left center seats.  Of course it must have been because of the song change...Katy Perry, be gone!

4.  Fowler finally batted right handed tonight, another nice double down the first base line.

5.  Spilly was Special K tonight...looked lost at the plate...three strikeouts (and additional five more for the team).

6.  Thankfully Lopez had a nice base hit with two outs in the 6th to bring home Fowler who was on third - after being on second with no outs - I think situational hitting was important this Spring (?).  CarGo did hit to first to move Fowler over but Spilly K'd...

7.  The days of Helton getting extra bases is about over...he was nailed down at second after a wall hitting blast...although the left fielder made a nice play

8.  Another nice night for Iannetta.

9.  Chacin pitched extremely well, allowing baserunners but getting out of innings.  Betancourt was on fire, striking out two, and hey Street had a "good" save tonight (I still left early, can't watch it!).

10.  Tracy's good move of the day:  Double switch in the 7th by pinch hitting Stewart for Chacin, then putting pitcher's spot in the 7th hole and taking out Wiggington.  It set up well in case Rox had to bat in the ninth...Giambi anyone?  Pretty good move...

Monday, April 4, 2011

Rox Talk - Week 1

The Week That Was
A 1-1 week against the D-Backs. The Rox currently stand at 1-1. One game back from division leading LA in third place. Currently 1-1 at home and 0-0 on the road, the Rox have outscored its opponents 9-8 (expected wins is 1 versus historical wins at 1). On pace for 90 wins with 729 runs scored and 648 runs against. Playoff indicator (Runs scored/Runs Against ratio) is 1.13 (1.16 indicates high playoff potential).

Not much to say after two games.  Just to say that 1) Tulo will get a hit, 2) U-Ball won't have too many more 1 strike out games, and 3) Home Runs will come!

Odds and Ends
Found MLB payroll chart in the newspaper today and was a bit surprised to see our Rox so high.  Ranked 14th we find ourselves right below Texas with a payroll of $92,299,265 and right above Atlanta at $87,003,192 (bit surprising there).  Rox come in at $87,998,071.  Yanks lead the league at $201,689,030 and KC is at the bottom with a payroll of $36,126,400 (Yikes!).  Does the baseball model work?  Does anyone in the right mind believed Royals can compete with a payroll of $36 million?  I mean players make more than this!

Five Questions: Colorado Rockies at Hardball Times there is a paragraph which states:

"In his evaluation of park factors, Dave Studeman pointed out that we should not place our faith in one year’s worth of data in determining park effects, but he also pointed out that the increase in home runs at Coors Field in 2010 could be signaling several things. Either the data used to anoint the humidor as the answer to home runs didn't use a large enough sample size (years) to make an accurate determination of its success or that 2010’s 1.50 home run ratio was an aberration, and we can expect a correction soon. Either way the jury must still be out on whether treating baseballs like a Cohiba is really working."

Not for sure what the 1.50 home run ratio is but the graph below shows both Rox and opponents home runs summed divided by 81 games to give a home run rate per game.  As you can see since 2002 this rate has decreased quite a lot since the 'roid era.  Now of course this rate could have decreased because of drug testing or better home pitching from the Rox but I do think something has changed...whether it is the humidor or not (?)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 2

Mt Elbert:  Fowler (0.143) and de la Rosa (0.298)
Arikaree River:  Tulo (-0.156)

1.  Hard to believe that into the second game of the year pitchers were pitching around CarGo to get to Tulo.  From my second deck perch Tulo is getting pounded down and inside.  Adjustments will have to be made...

2.  Closers - Players You Hate!  By the way, I like Huston.  He is a gutsy closer but I will be honest with you.  At the start of the ninth tonight I left because I can't stand watching him pitch.  In case you are wondering Huston has pitched in 110 games for the Rox and has 56 saves.  He pitches about every two days usually going about an inning.  Tends to give up a hit an appearance but also strikes out a batter.  He tends to face an average of 4 batters and throws about 15 pitches with 10 of them for strikes.  As much as we moan he has only 5 blown saves.

3.  Maybe baseball is all about pitching an defense.  I had four "!" on plays made by Stewart, Tulo, Smith, and CarGo (or call him superman for his flying spread out catch)

4.  Team needs to work on bunting.  Second game in a row that Rox couldn't lay down a bunt to get a player into scoring position, thankfully this time around Fowler smashed a double and scored Iannetta from first.

5.  6 more K's to add to the season, on pace for fro 1,377 or almost 100 more than last year...come on Coach Lansford.

6.  Pardon the scorecard but I was teaching my 8 year old how to score but wow what a series of defensive plays!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Box Score Bytes - Game 1

1.  First off who was the high and low point for Colorado yesterday?

Mt Elbert (highest point in Colorado):  Jose Lopez (0.128 WPA) and Huston Street (0.146)
Arikaree River (lowest point in Colorado):  Tulo (-0.325) and U-Ball (-0.372)

2.  Only the 7th time in Rox history to actually open the new season at home (94, 95, 01, 05, 06, 07, and 11).  Rox are now 4-3 in these games.

3.  Rox played in their 204th extra inning game and have a record of 99 - 105.  45 - 67 all time at home!  7 - 12 against the D-Backs...

4.  D-Backs manager, Kirk Gibson and former Dodger, continues to make Rox suffer at the hands of anything related to LA.  Rox lose fourth straight to D-Backs going back to last year.

5.  So much for Spring Training and attention to details...Rox lose another one run game after going 28 - 30 last year...of course over the long haul Rox are 384 - 385 all time in one run games.

6.  Rox ball started out well yesterday with Fowler getting a walk, moving to second on a wild pitch, and then scoring on a double by Smith but then as the game progressed old habits creeped in.  Eleven strikeouts for the day.  Inability to get the key hit showed up again in 4th (Iannetta on third with one out, no runs) and 5th (CarGo on second with no outs, no runs).  Team started pressing at the end of the game looking for that walk off homer rather than manufacturing a run...

7.  Base running gaffs galore...Rogers (running as a pinch runner? where is EY Jr?) getting thrown out at second with a groundball to short when trying to advance to third.  And maybe Smith not trying to score from first on a line drive single to deep Center in the 8th.

8.  Did the umpires steal a game from the Rox?  Fan interference in the 5th creating the second out in the inning with CarGo on second...and a miss call on a catch by Smith...probably not

9.  And from the uh oh file...should we be concerned that U-Ball only averaged 93 on his fastball yesterday?  Reports indicated he didn't have his normal "bite"

10.  Tracy's Epic Fail for the Day:  Putting Rogers in has a pinch runner...