Early in 2017, the Colorado Rockies were making waves not just by jumping out to an incredible start but by doing so against some of the best pitchers in the league. Racking up wins against Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke, Jake Arrieta, and Johnny Cueto, the Rockies were afraid of no one. But lately, they’ve been doing a lot of tipping their cap to the aces of the league and Cueto got his revenge in a dominant performance at Coors Field on Wednesday night resulting in a 11-3 win for the San Francisco Giants.
Colorado had beaten the Giants in 10 consecutive home games which was the second longest home-winning streak against one team of anyone in MLB this season. It is only the third time in franchise history the Rockies have gotten to double-digit consecutive home wins against a team. So, for the optimistic spinner Rockies fan… the Giants were due.
The Giants scored a pair of runs in the first after a rare error on Nolan Arenado after a Joe Panik single and a Hunter Pence walk. Freeland was still a pitch away from escaping the inning but gave up a single up the middle to Austin Slater. One of the runs was unearned but both could have been avoided.
San Francisco jumped all over Freeland in the fourth. Kelby Tomlinson led off with a hard single to right and Freeland lost the light-hitting Ryder Jones walking him after working into a full count. Cueto did his job to sacrifice the runners up one spot with the bunt before a Gorkys Hernandez single through the left side plated two more. Panik followed with a slap double to left field giving the Giants a 5-0 lead and chasing Freeland from the game.
In an odd twist, the Hernandez single was one that Arenado typically turns into an out. It was hit hard but the ball glanced off his glove and was rightfully ruled a hit, but it sure was strange to see five runs on the board that might not have been if Arenado had played better defense.
Carlos Estevez got the final out of the fourth and pitched the fifth giving up just one hit and striking out one.
The Rockies finally got on the board in the bottom of the fifth. Charlie Blackmon‘s 29th double of the season narrowly missed leaving the park, banging off the top of the “Bridich Barrier” wall in right center field. Carlos Gonzalez, who was moved into the third spot in the order mostly due to his higher level of production as of late, singled on a hard drive the other way to plate Blackmon and make it 5-1.
Colorado gave the momentum right back, though, when rookie Jeff Hoffman made his first relief appearance of the season and ran into a single from Hernandez and a double from Panik. Brandon Crawford rubbed some salt in the wound with the bloopiest of bloop singles to left to give the Giants a 7-1 lead. Mac Williamson homered in the seventh to make it 8-1.
Charlie Blackmon hit his 34th homer of the year in the eighth and Nick Hundley got his normal Coors Field home run in the eighth to make it 10-2. The Giants scored their final run on a Hernandez single in the ninth.
Colorado fell to 74-65 and currently hold a two-and-a-half game lead for the second NL Wild Card that could go down to two games should the Cardinals win this evening.