Colorado Rockies: 7/9-7/10 Series

The Giants hit the road again for another two game series before heading to Arizona. Whoever did the scheduling must not be too fond of the Giants... putting them against the Dodgers, A's, and Cardinals in such a long stretch, and now sending them to Coors Field for another quicky before bouncing them over to Arizona.

OVERALL PREDICTION: GIANTS
The last time the Giants went to Coors Field they didn't get all of what they wanted. Sure, they got some wins, but what a lot of them were looking forward to was to smash baseballs out of the park. Players always look forward to hit at Coors Field because of it's smaller dimensions and higher altitude where there is practically no wind present.

The Giants just came off a sweep of the Cardinals (the whole two games), but Colorado can't say the same. They fell short both times to the now second place NL West holders, the Dbacks. Well, fell short is being nice about it, they were pounded the first game 6-14 and the second game by 3-9.

The Giants are the best road team and the Rockies are the best home team, so it should be a showdown in Colorado.

SERIES QUESTIONABLES:
San Francisco:

  • Benito Santiago (C): left pinky finger (day-to-day status)

    Colorado:
    Chris Richard (1B): hamstring (60-day DL)

    Starters:
    Jesse Foppert (5-7, 5.21 ERA)

  • Rockies batting .188 against him
  • only allowed two runs in last start against Rockies

    Jim Brower (4-1, 3.73 ERA) (Note: Jim Brower may or may not be spot starting for Jason Schmidt)

  • Rockies batting .291 against him
  • spot starting for Jason Schmidt
  • won last start against Cardinals, did not allow run in early relief against Cardinals in last appearance

    Aaron Cook (2-6, 5.91 ERA)

  • Giants batting .324 against him

    Darren Oliver (6-5, 4.82 ERA)

  • Giants batting .275 against him
  • won last start against Giants
  • gave up four career homeruns to two Giants (Cruz, Aurilia: two each)
  • Alfonzo 1-14 against him

    PREDICTION: GIANTS
    I am giving Foppert the benefit of the doubt against Aaron Cook. We finally found someone who's doing just a little worse than Foppert is, who'd know they'd be facing each other? Foppert somewhat found a bit of his rhythm back in his last start, but still has a long way to go. Cook has just been... not good for the Rockies, and since both pitchers are struggling in the park known as Coors Field, the hitter's park, then they've got their work cut out for them. It's going to be a high scoring game. Foppert did well against the Rockies last time he faced them, limiting their team batting average against him at a .188. The Giants have a .324 success against Cook.

    Jason Schmidt has pitched three complete games consecutively, and the All-Star break wouldn't be much of a break for him either since he'll most likely be starting the game. He needs to rest, and Schmidt and Alou both make it sound like it's best that Schmidt rests during this start in Colorado, which is not a pitcher friendly ballpark. So the sizzling Jim Brower may get this spot start, and this man just won't stop. He limited the Cards to one run in his last spot start for Damian Moss and he only gave up one run to the Cards in early relief for Kirk Rueter, who had to leave the last game against the Cardinals with a strained shoulder.

    First Base:
    J.T. Snow (.274)

  • .333 against Rockies pitchers
  • vs. Cook (3-5): one 2B
  • vs. Oliver (7-17): two RBIs, three walks, two strikeouts

    Andres Galarraga (.302)

  • .259 against Rockies pitchers
  • never faced Cook
  • never faced Oliver

    Todd Helton (.344)

  • .321 against Giants pitchers
  • vs. Foppert (0-5): one strikeout
  • vs. Brower (4-9): one 2B, one homerun, two RBIs, one strikeout

    Mark Sweeney (.209)

  • .250 against Giants players
  • never faced Foppert
  • never faced Brower

    PREDICTION: ROCKIES
    Defense: Giants
    Snow has a great extension and is able to get those wide throws. He is also an experienced first baseman and makes little errors.

    Offense: Rockies
    Helton has been a hot batter for the Rockies and was voted to start in the All-Star game, but still, we can't ignore Galarraga's hot hitting in Colorado. Snow has also been coming around, getting hits consistently.

    Second Base:
    Ray Durham (.304)

  • .375 against Rockies pitchers
  • vs. Cook (1-1): one 2B, two walks
  • vs. Oliver (8-20): four 2Bs, four RBIs, one strikeout

    Neifi Perez (.286)

  • .342 against Rockies pitchers
  • never faced Cook
  • vs. Oliver (9-24): four 2Bs, one RBI, one strikeout

    Ronnie Belliard (.302)

  • .311 against Giants pitchers
  • vs. Foppert (1-5): one RBI
  • vs. Brower (0-2)

    PREDICTION: TIED
    Defense: Giants
    Durham has been a defensive presence for the Giants, being a great middle man in a double play. Perez continues to wow us with his defensive abilities.

    Offense: Tied
    Belliard and Durham have been good hitters for their respective teams. Durham has been doing his job of getting on base and so has Belliard, so this position is up for grabs.

    Shortstop:
    Rich Aurilia (.261)

  • .224 against Rockies pitchers
  • vs. Cook (1-6)
  • vs. Oliver (5-14): two homeruns, one strikeout

    Juan Uribe (.257)

  • .213 against Giants pitchers
  • never faced Foppert
  • vs. Brower (3-4): one 3B, three RBIs

    PREDICTION: GIANTS
    Defense: Giants
    Uribe makes many errors at shortstop, but Aurilia has been solid along with the rest of the Giants' defense.

    Offense: Giants
    Aurilia is finally hitting the ball, and since he didn't have that great of a series at Coors Field last time, look for him to shoot for another long one, longer than the one he has at the park which already holds the record for the longest homerun hit at Coors. Uribe is a high strikeout victim.

    Third Base:
    Edgardo Alfonzo (.235)

  • .216 against Rockies pitchers
  • vs. Cook (0-3)
  • vs. Oliver (1-14): two strikeouts

    Pedro Feliz (.231)

  • .235 against Rockies pitchers
  • never faced Cook
  • vs. Oliver (0-2): one strikeout

    Greg Norton (.256)

  • .237 against Giants pitchers
  • vs. Foppert (1-4): one 2B, one RBI
  • vs. Brower (1-6): one 2B, two RBIs

    Chris Stynes (.279)

  • .196 against Giants pitchers
  • never faced Foppert
  • vs. Brower (3-4): one 2B

    Mark Bellhorn (.219)

  • .333 against Giants pitchers
  • never faced Foppert
  • vs. Brower (1-2)

    PREDICTION: GIANTS
    Defense: Giants
    Alfonzo was acquired for his offense, but who'd knew he'd be such a great third baseman? He came up with some impressive stops in the last series against the Cardinals.

    Offense: Giants
    Alfonzo is starting to heat up and has been very consistent with his hitting, although the Giants wouldn't mind if he started jacking the ball. Alfonzo has gone close to two hundred at-bats without hitting a homerun. He's due, he's definitely due.

    Catcher:
    Benito Santiago (.294)

  • .281 against Rockies pitchers
  • vs. Cook (2-3)
  • vs. Oliver (4-13): one 2B, two RBIs, one strikeout

    Yorvit Torrealba (.270)

  • .200 against Rockies pitchers
  • vs. Cook (1-3): one 2B, two RBIs
  • never faced Oliver

    Chris Johnson (.233)

  • .229 against Giants pitchers
  • vs. Foppert (0-1): one walk
  • vs. Brower (0-5): two strikeouts

    Bobby Estalella (.225)

  • .125 against Giants pitchers
  • vs. Foppert (0-3): two strikeouts
  • vs. Brower (0-1)

    PREDICTION: GIANTS
    Defense: Tied
    Depending on whether or not Santiago returns to the line-up for the series, this can go either way. Johnson is a good throwing catcher from his knees, probably the best in the league. Santiago will be very much needed in the line-up, but Torrealba has shown that he is able to do a decent job as well.

    Offense: Giants
    Santiago is a needed part of the Giants' offense, but they seem to be doing fine without him, the question is for how long can they do without him? Especially at Coors Field where five runs may not be enough to win the ball game.

    Left Field:
    Barry Bonds (.308)

  • .381 against Rockies pitchers
  • vs. Cook (3-5): one 2B, two RBIs
  • vs. Oliver (2-10): one 2B, two RBIs, one strikeout

    Jay Payton (.297)

  • .311 against Giants pitchers
  • vs. Foppert (3-5)
  • vs. Brower (2-7): one 2B, two strikeouts

    Greg Vaughn (.194)

  • .304 against Giants pitchers
  • never faced Foppert
  • never faced Brower

    PREDICTION: GIANTS
    Defense: Giants
    Bonds still has it. He made a spectacular catch against the Padres and continues his great defensive play in left field.

    Offense: Giants
    Bonds will be looking forward to playing at Coors Field. He won't go easy on those high pitches, so Colorado should be ready for a show, Bonds will be smacking baseballs in the stands all series long.

    Center Field:
    Marquis Grissom (.305)

  • .261 against Rockies pitchers
  • vs. Cook (1-4)
  • vs. Oliver (6-17): one 2B, two strikeouts

    Preston Wilson (.295)

  • .202 against Giants pitchers
  • vs. Foppert (0-3): two strikeouts
  • vs. Brower (0-5)

    PREDICTION: TIED
    Defense: Tied
    Both Grissom and Wilson have shown that they are able to cover ground and to play center field. Wilson is not afraid to dive for balls and Grissom can run down any ball hit in his direction.

    Offense: Tied
    Both Grissom and Wilson have about the same batting average. Grissom has a better record against the Rockies than Wilson does against the Giants, but Wilson has been one of the hot hitters for Colorado.

    Right Field:
    Jose Cruz, Jr. (.264)

  • .205 against Rockies pitchers
  • vs. Cook (0-2)
  • vs. Oliver (5-21): one 2B, two homeruns, four RBIs, three strikeouts

    Larry Walker (.296)

  • .338 against Giants pitchers
  • vs. Foppert (1-4): one walk
  • vs. Brower (2-6): one 2B, one RBI, three walks

    PREDICTION: ROCKIES
    Defense: Giants
    Cruz continues to show his brilliance in the outfield, running down fly balls the look to be extra bases for the hitters that end up as outs.

    Offense: Rockies
    Walker is one of the most feared hitters in the league and is second to the most walks given behind Bonds. Cruz is heating up though and showing definite signs of the way he was in the beginning of the season.

    BULLPEN: GIANTS
    Relievers: Giants
    The Giants' bullpen has been very impressive in their last few outings, especially showing poise when Rueter had to leave early due to his strained shoulder in the last game. Even in an early emergency relief job, Jim Brower was able to perform well. The combination of Joe Nathan, Scott Eyre, and Felix Rodriguez as the set up men have worked out well for the Giants.

    Closer: Giants
    Justin Speier has been good out of the Colorado bullpen. Tim Worrell continues his brilliance and is showing signs of a closer. He was calm and relaxed in his last save, quietly retiring the three batters in the ninth to earn the save and to give the win to his teammate.



    Sara Kwan was born in San Francisco and raised in the Bay Area. She currently writes game recaps, other articles, and is the Giant Prophet for SFDugout.com. Any comments or questions about the article, baseball, or the meaning of life can be sent to Sara at kwanchino@alpha-q.net

    The views expressed in the columns do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the site's publisher, writers, or other staff members. The content on this site may not be redistributed without the expressed consent of SFDugout.com.


  • Giants Farm Top Stories