Let the bottom-feeding begin. After a successful run against some very solid teams (Nationals, Brave, Mets, Yankees, Braves again), the Reds are entering an easy stretch on their schedule. Given how well they’ve been performing lately, this could be the start of a very nice run.
The Rockies, as you may have guessed from that first paragraph, are not very good. Oh, they have a few solid players, especially on the offensive end, but they can’t pitch at all. They’ve already used eight starting pitchers this year, and it’s not like no one is averaging even six innings per start and their best pitcher (Juan Nicasio) has an ERA of 4.83. Their second best pitcher used to role with Moses.
Probable Starting Pitchers
Friday: Johnny Cueto (5-1 1.97) vs. Christian Friedrich (1-1 5.00)
Saturday: Mike Leake (1-5 5.32) vs. Jeremy Guthrie (2-2 5.55)
Sunday: Mat Latos (3-2 4.55) vs. Jamie Moyer (2-4 4.99)
Tonight’s match up is, um, favorable, wouldn’t you say? Seriously, Friedrich has been a bit unlucky so far and he was doing well in Triple-A before he got the call, but he spent the last two years proving he couldn’t get Double-A batters out. He is a lefty, and that could cause some problems, but I like the odds here.
Guthrie is almost certainly better than he’s pitched. But then, so is Mike Leake. After the last start Leake put up and looking at Guthrie’s history and his poor numbers so far this year, this is another match-up that favors the Reds.
Sunday? What am I supposed to say about Sunday? Moyer is almost exactly twice as old as Latos (seriously, look it up). He is not however twice as good as Latos and should be over-matched.
Starting Position Players and Likely Lineup
1. Marco Scutaro (R) – 2B
2. Jordan Pacheco (R) – 3B
3. Carlos Gonzalez (L) – LF
4. Troy Tulowitzki (R) – SS
5. Todd Helton (L) – 1B
6. Michael Cuddyer (R) – RF
7. Clutch-Man Monie (R) – C
8. Dexter Fowler (B) – CF
Much like the Reds, the Rockies have some real black holes in this lineup. Scutaro (.252/.315/.319) and Clutch-Man (.215/.260/.398) have been especially bad. CarGo and Tulo are still there of course. I expect you know about them. Fowler, via the ability to take walk and hit for a little power has actually been among there better hitters, so it makes sense that he hits eighth (no, it doesn’t). Todd Helton is on the grim death march that is the end of his glorious career.
Overall, this is not a lineup to afraid of beyond the big two.
There are some bright spots in the bullpen. Rafael Betancourt and former Red Matt Belisle have been especially good. If the Rockies can get to the seventh or eight with a lead, the Reds might have a hard time coming back. However, this bullpen is not deep and beyond a few quality performers, there isn’t much to see or be worried about.
Rockies on the DL
Notably, Jorge De Le Rosa and Jhoulys Chacin. If both were healthy, the Rockies would be a bit more respectable. De La Rosa will probably be back this season, but not yet. Chacin was apparently hiding an injury this spring and may be out for a while.
The last preview I did was Pittsburgh, and this one feel very much the same. I feel like I’m being much too generous to the Reds, but then I look at things and realize that Colorado just isn’t a very good baseball team. They weren’t really expected to be good and, it turns out, they aren’t. Hopefully the Reds can keep the streak going.