DENVER -- The Colorado Rockies staged an exciting late comeback and got the best starting performance yet from young Jeff Hoffman but still came out on the losing end, 4-3, to the Milwaukee Brewers in ten innings.
In the top of the first, Jordan Patterson showed off his range with a spectacular diving play. This was his first start at first base in MLB.
Jeff Hoffman avoided any real trouble until the fifth inning. And even then, he didn't pitch particularly poorly. He did issue the ever-omen leadoff walk to Hernan Perez but induced what looked for a moment like a double-play groundball from Orlando Arcia. But Cristhian Adames made a bad throw to second base on the play resulting in an error that allowed the runner to move to third.
Perez came around to score on a swinging bunt from Matin Maldonado that dribbled out into no-man's-land between the catcher, pitcher, and third baseman. Hoffman bounced back to strike out Scooter Gennett and his counterpart, Wily Peralta, and then Domingo Santana with the high heat at 97 mph to end the rally.
Hoffman finished on that flurry of strikeouts. His final line: 5 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 7 K. He threw 76 pitches, 49 for strikes.
Eddie Butler replaced Hoffman and pitched pretty well through two and a third innings of work, though he did give up one run that actually came in on a hit off Jordan Lyles in the eighth. Lyles allowed another run to come in on a single up the middle from Perez before shutting down the frame.
Tony Wolters lead off the bottom of the inning with a triple into the right-center field gap and Pat Vailaika drove him in with an RBI single through the hole between third and short. After Charlie Blackmon Lined out, Daniel Descalso hit into what looked like a sure double-play but Gennet booted the ball at second and everyone was safe. Nolan Arenado flew out to right but Carlos Gonzalez delivered a two-out, opposite-field RBI single to bring the Rockies within one.
It was the 100th RBI of the season for CarGo, only the second time in his often injury-riddled career that he has reached that mark.
The rally was finished off in the bottom of the ninth when Jordan Patterson collected his third hit of the game and came in to score on a pinch-hit RBI double from Tom Murphy.
But the Rockies couldn't drive in Murphy and the Brewers took the lead back in the top of the tenth on a monstrous home run to left, Chris Carter's 41st of the season, tying Arenado for the NL lead.
And the Rockies rally fell just short. Final: 4-3, Milwaukee.
The final game of the 2016 regular season takes place tomorrow afternoon at Coors Field. It's your last chance (if you live in or near Denver) to take in baseball before it leaves until the spring. German Marquez will get just his third MLB start, giving Rockies fans one more look at the future before sending them on their way. The Brewers starter is till yet to be determined. First pitch is at 1:10 MST.