The Coors Effect

July 10, 2010 12:38 AM

Stewart's grand slam lifts Rockies

Remember how, earlier today, I said that the Rockies probably weren't going to be scoring much off the Padres' bullpen, and that if they were going to win games they'd have to do it by the sixth inning?

Yeah, about that...

So, heading into the bottom of the seventh, the Rockies trailed 8-5.  No chance of a comeback against that solid San Diego bullpen, right?  Yeah, I didn't take into account the possibility that 1990s Coors Field rules would apply here.  In the bottom of the seventh, the Rockies got to Padres relievers Ryan Webb and Luke Gregerson in a big way: five runs on four hits and a walk, capped off by an Ian Stewart grand slam that gave the Rockies a 10-8 lead that the bullpen was all too happy to hold onto.

That was Stewart's 11th homer this season, and his second of the evening.  It says something that the Rockies have a guy who's capable of going yard twice in a game -- and who hit 25 homers last season, his first full year in the bigs -- batting seventh in the lineup, and no, that something is not "Jim Tracy has no idea how to put together a lineup."  Brad Hawpe strikes out with the bases loaded?  Never mind that, Stew can bring the runs home.  Stewart almost single-handedly carried the Rockies to a win on a Bad Jorge night.  Jorge, making his first start since April, didn't make it out of the fifth inning and gave up seven runs (five earned.)  Not so good.

Luckily for the Rockies, Padres starter Kevin Correia was basically equally bad, and the bullpen did not cooperate by putting forth their usual dominance and getting Correia a win he didn't deserve.  The Rockies scored all ten of their runs in two five-run innings -- the aforementioned seventh, and the third inning, which saw a two-run homer by Carlos Gonzalez (his sixteenth of the season) and Stewart's other homer, sandwiched around back-to-back doubles by Jason Giambi and Miguel Olivo.

I'd love to say this win was all about Stewart and the offense, but the bullpen played a key role, keeping the Padres mostly off the board aside from one hiccup by Matt Belisle.  Joe Beimel was huge, getting a key GIDP in the eighth inning when the Padres were threatening.

Anyway, shall we say that was a good start to the series?

Rockies Top Three

1.  Ian Stewart
: Obvious.

2.  Carlos Gonzalez: Also obvious.

3.  Jason Giambi: In the last four days, Giambi's batting average has gone up 61 points.  That says a lot about how little he had been playing.

A Member Of