Rockies Notes: Tulo Injury Update

After blowing a pair of leads to the Athletics on Tuesday and Wednesday, the Rockies never lead on Thursday as only a ninth inning rally prevented the National League's best offense from getting shutout at home. Colorado couldn't touch Oakland rookie Jarrod Parker as the Rockies had a man reach second base only twice while Parker was in the game. 

Parker held the Rockies to just four base runners (three singles and a walk) in seven innings while recording six strikeouts. The Rockies only extra base hits came in the ninth inning against left-hander Brian Fuentes, who allowed a double to Tyler Colvin and a home run to Marco Scutaro (his fourth). Given some of the scores we've seen at Coors Field recently, the job Parker did on Thursday was impressive to say the least. 

Brandon Moss, a journeyman outfielder (mostly in the minor leagues) drafted by the Red Sox in 2002, had three extra base hits in the game by himself (a home run and two doubles). In fact, Moss hit at least one home run in every game of this series (he hit two on Tuesday night including a mammoth shot into the third deck off Jeremy Guthrie). In the series, he was 6-for-13, with four home runs, two doubles, and eight RBI. Not too shabby for a guy who had a .236/.300/.382 career line at the major league level entering this year. 

The loss was Colorado's eighth in a row overall and brings their interleague record on the season to 0-9 despite Colorado being the home team in each interleague series so far. The sweep by the A's is particularly disheartening as it had been over a calender year since Oakland had swept any team on the road.

The pitching has been mostly to blame as the Rockies just aren't getting much if any production from their rotation. The Rockies 6.31 starter's ERA is the worst in baseball by a fair margin and the worst in the National League by over a full run (Astros are the next worst with a 4.68). Could you imagine if it were the Rockies and not the Astros who were moving to the American League West for next season? It's a scary thought. 

The club will travel to Detroit as the Rockies are due for a series against the Tigers at Comerica Park. The Tigers beat the Cubs Thursday afternoon 5-3 behind ace pitcher Justin Verlander, who gave them eight strong innings. The Rockies have to be thankful that they won't face Verlander in this series. Instead, Detroit will throw at them rookie lefty Casey Crosby in his third MLB start on Friday, likely Doug Fister in his first start back since his second stint on the disabled list with an abdominal strain on Saturday, and the inconsistent Max Scherzer on Sunday. Despite being mired in third place in the American League Central, the Tigers have taken back to back interleague series against the Reds and the Cubs.

The return of outfielder Austin Jackson has also given Detroit a boost. Jackson had a game saving catch in the ninth inning that clinched Detroit's Wednesday victory over the Cubs as well as a home run and a double Thursday that helped power the offense. Jackson went down with an abdominal injury on May 16th and returned for the second game of the Reds series last Saturday as the Tigers went 8-13 without Jackson in the lineup.

In Rockies injury news, it appears the Rockies will be without shortstop Troy Tulowitzki for the series in Detroit. There was a chance that Tulowitzki, who is battling a left groin strain, could've been ready for Friday's game but that is no longer an option after he left his rehab game with Triple-A Colorado Springs on Wednesday after a base hit because he didn't feel quite right. Tulowitzki was at Coors Field Thursday morning for strength tests and an MRI, which the Rockies are calling "precautionary." It's highly unlikely that he'll play in the Detroit series at all as it was still up in the air Thursday morning as to whether Tulowitzki would even fly to Detroit with the team or not.  

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