As I've grown accustomed to writing about this team this year, the reason for the club's latest loss was simple: they didn't pitch. Jamie Moyer had arguably his worst start of the season as he allowed five earned runs on seven hits and a walk in just five innings.
Moyer did strikeout seven Dodgers, which is an improvement considering he had 17 strikeouts in six starts entering the game. Still, with pitchers Jeremey Guthrie, Jhoulys Chacin, and Jorge De La Rosa on the mend and due to return soon, Moyer's days in the Rockies rotation appear to be numbered.
If you are only looking at earned runs, you might think that Moyer has had a pretty decent year to date and with one bad start his ERA went up to 4.66. When you look at his runs allowed per nine innings (earned or otherwise), Moyer has a 6.05 for the season. The Rockies defense hasn't been that bad and it's very hard for a team to win baseball games while giving up six runs a start. Perhaps that's why the Rockies have lost all but one of Moyer's starts.
Defense certainly wasn't the problem on Friday when Moyer's undoing was his dealing with former Rockies second basemen Mark Ellis, who broke the game open for the Dodgers a solo home run and a two-run double (both off fastballs).
With Alex White and Christian Friedrich combining for back-to-back quality starts earlier this week (and just the second time for Rockies pitchers all season), the symbolism should be clear. It was awkward to see Jamie Moyer at Spring Training as a favorite to make the rotation and it's been awkward watching him pitch every five days for a team with this much young pitching. The Rockies don't really have a spot for Moyer anymore and squeezing him out was bound to happen. I never thought he'd make it through the entire season in Colorado just because I don't necessarily see the need for a team going to the playoffs or a team developing young pitchers to have Moyer in the rotation.
The Rockies don't look playoff bound just yet, but the young pitchers in this organization need to gain experience at the major league level. The first concession the club is making for Moyer is to send LHP Drew Pomeranz to Triple-A Colorado Springs to work on his mechanics.
Pomeranz has pitched pretty well in the majors this year but left his start four days ago with a right quadriceps bruise after a line drive him off the bat of Edinson Volquez got him. Now, the club isn't sending him down because he's hurt. He's getting sent down to "work on his mechanics" which is fairly vague, but understandable when dealing with a young pitcher.
Sooner or later, the club will have to deal with the old pitcher.
- Dexter Fowler hit his first triple of the season last night, he set the Rockies club record with 15 triples last season. Perhaps this is a sign of things to come. Fowler, hitting .223 on the year, has been dropped down in the order and clearly needs to show more of this offensive firepower to move back up.
- Jordan Pacheco hit 2nd for some reason last night. I'd literally be fine with anyone else on the team hitting 2nd but Mr. Pacheco. Sorry, Pacheco family.
- Jeremy Guthrie tossed four scoreless innings in a rehab start with High-A Modesto on Thursday, he'll take his turn for the Rockies Tuesday against the Giants barring any setbacks.