Nolan Arenado’s MLB-leading 12th home run of the 2016 season — a no-doubt blast to left field with two outs in the top of the first — started a huge night for the Colorado Rockies offense en route to a 17-7 pummeling of the San Francisco Giants.
The Rockies have now played 145 games at AT&T Park and have only scored in double-digits three times but accomplished that feat in the top of the fifth inning, plating 13 runs in that frame alone.
It was the highest-scoring inning in Rockies franchise history. Lasting 37 minutes and 45 seconds, it was also the most runs scored in any inning by any team in MLB since Arizona on April 11th, 2010.
The whole thing began when Trevor Story blasted his 11th home run of the season on slider away from him that he still managed to pull over the left field fence. The Giants committed a couple of errors around a Carlos Gonzales double and Gerardo Parra RBI single but then the Rockies just went to town, smashing the baseball around all parts of the park.
In the midst of the madness, Vin Mazzaro hit Arenado with the bases loaded and that just seemed to send the Rockies into overdrive. Story and Parra both had multiple RBI hits in the inning and Tony Wolters smashed a double off the right-field wall, really breaking things open when it was still a three-run game. It was Wolter’s hardest hit ball of the season and one he desperately needed, mired in a bit of a slump lately.
Even pitcher Chris Rusin got in on the action, and by the time the dust had settled, his two-RBI single made it 17-3 Rockies. The only Rockies’ starter not to record an RBI was Carlos Gonzalez who went 2-for-4 with a walk and three runs scored. Story, Arenado, and Parra drove in three apiece.
The Giants got four back on Rusin in the bottom of the innings and he had to be pulled in favor of Christian Bergman but the rest of the game was a formality at that point.
The 17 runs is the second most the Rockies have ever scored on the road, coming just two shy of their total against Houston in September of 2011.
It was 6-3 and Wolters was locked in a battle at the plate and down two strikes but managed to lift an off-speed pitch off the wall in right, bringing in two runs and giving the Rockies all the momentum. A three-run lead on the road against the Giants is never a safe thing, so those insurance runs allowed everyone to relax which ended up leading to an offensive onslaught.
You can’t read too much into a game that gets this out of hand, but the Rockies continued to play with fire after already up big. Losing tough games to Los Angeles and Pittsburgh may have played a role, but see if the Rockies come out aggressive again tomorrow citing the Arenado HPB. There is no love lost between these two teams and the Rockies landed a massive gut punch today. They are unlikely to let up if there is any perceived slight to their leader.
Game 2 against the Giants is set for a 8:10 MST start time. Chad Bettis takes on Madison Bumgarner so you should expect to see fewer runs.