Baseball Notebook

Daily Baseball Blog

Rockies Win, Face Chilly Reception in Denver

John Lackey shutout the Red Sox on four singles as the Angels took their first game of the ALDS on Thursday night.

John Lackey shutout the Red Sox 5-0 on four singles as the Angels took their first game of the ALDS on Thursday night.

Rockies 5 Phillies 4

The Rockies were leading the Phillies 4-0 after five innings then hung on to win 5-4. Phillies fans may have given the Rockies a chilly reception but it will be nothing compared to the chilly reception both teams face upon their return to Colorado.

There is a 30 percent chance of light freezing drizzle and snow and areas of fog for Saturday night at Coors Field. The high for Saturday will be in the lower 30’s so by game time the temperature should be hovering between 25 and 30 degrees. It will be about 40 degrees colder at Coors Field than it was for the game yesterday where it was 65 degrees.

Now back to the Rockies-Phillies game…Dexter Fowler didn’t have a hit in the game but he still drove in two runs with sacrifice flies and set up the run in the first inning with a sacrifice bunt.

Yorvit Torrealba hit a two-run homer in the fourth inning to make the score 3-0 in favor of Colorado.

When Aaron Cook left the game Jose Contreras allowed a two-run single by Raul Ibanez that reduced the Rockies lead to 5-3. Contreras was the beneficiary of a inning ending double play or the Phillies may have taken control of the game with another couple of hits.

Hamels failed to win a day game for the seventh time in 2009 after having a 0-6 record in day games during the regular season.

Rockies closer Huston Street entered the game with one out in the ninth to nail down the save but not before the Phillies had the winning run on base when the game ended.

Dodgers 3 Cardinals 2

The Cardinals took an early 1-0 lead on a Matt Holliday homer in the first inning but Andre Ethier evened the score at 1-1 with his homer in the fourth inning.

Colby Rasmus doubled in a run in the seventh inning but made the mistake of trying to stretch the double into a triple and was thrown out at third base.

Matt Kemp had thrown the ball to shortstop Rafael Furcal who threw it to first baseman James Loney who then threw to third baseman Casey Blake to nail Rasmus.

Instead of having a runner on second base with nobody out the Cardinals had nobody on base with two outs and finished the inning without scoring again.

With the Cardinals needing only one out to record a 2-1 win Matt Holliday dropped a liner that would have been the game ending third out.  He said after the game that he lost it in the lights and that was evident after seeing the ball miss his glove and strike him in the stomach.

Ronnie Belliard singled to tie the score at 2-2 and then Mark Loretta hit a walkoff single to give the Dodgers a 3-2 win. It is ironic that Belliard and Loretta came through in the clutch while Manny Ramirez is hitting .125 in the postseason.

The Cardinals have the daunting task of defeating the Dodgers three times in a row to win the NLDS series. Worst of all the Cardinals have already used both their Cy Young candidates with no wins to show for it.

The Adam Wainwright and Clayton Kershaw matchup was as advertised with both starters pitching very well.

Angels 5 Red Sox 0

This game was over in the third inning when Torii Hunter hit a three-run homer to give the 3-0 lead over the Red Sox.

John Lackey handcuffed the Red Sox on four singles in seven and-a-third inings of pitching. The first seven Red Sox batters in the batting order had only two hits in 24 at bats.

Friday’s Division Series Matchups

Minnesota at New York

Gametime: 6:07 ET on TBS

Starting Pitching: The Twins will start Nick Blackburn as they try to even the series with A.J. Burnett on the mound for the Yankees.

Burnett has had command problems this season with 97 walks. Since he had 39 walks in 2006 he has issued 66, 86 and 97 walks in the last three seasons.

Blackburn walked only 41 batters in 205 innings while Burnett walked his 97 batters in 207 innings. That is a huge difference of 56 more walks by Burnett in only two more innings of pitching than Blackburn.

Boston at Los Angeles

Gametime: 9:37 ET on TBS

Starting Pitching: Josh Beckett who has only lost twice since July 21 will try to pitch the Red Sox to their first 2009 postseason win tonight. Beckett is 7-2 in the postseason and is 5-0 since winning the last game of the 2003 World Series.

The Angels will counter with Jered Weaver who posted a career high 16 wins this season.  He is 1-1 in postseason play with a 2.57 ERA.

Note: It makes no sense for MLB to schedule a late night game in the postseason on  a day when only two games are being played. It is like they are trying to avoid playing afternoon games.

There are only two games being played on Saturday also with the last game being played at 9:37 ET.

Then on Sunday four games are scheduled with the first game scheduled at 12:07 ET and the last game scheduled at 10:07 ET. That game may not be finished until after 1 AM ET and even longer if it goes into extra innings. Not many kids are going to be allowed to stay up till after 1 AM and then be in their classroom by 8:00 or 8:30 that morning.

With snow falling early this year we could see a lot of weather problems by the time the postseason ends in November. Saturday night at Coors Field could be an adventure even if it doesn’t snow if the field is icy and there are fog problems.

This situation brings the spotlight on the new stadium for the Twins next season which will be an outdoor stadium. It is almost like they are asking for weather problems that could have been prevented.

It is clear that they were trying to save the extra expense of constructing a domed stadium but they may wish they had a domed stadium once they start to play games in freezing weather.


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