Pitching in Coors Field is unlike pitching at any other stadium in the Major Leagues, and the Pirates pitchers were clearly outmatched on Friday night. The Rockies offense offense exploded for double digit runs as they went on to defeat Pittsburgh 13-2.
Jose Quintana got the start for the Pirates and was able to grind through five innings and 103 pitches, but he didn’t look his normal self out there. The left-hander was missing his spots at times and found himself behind hitters on several occasions. In total, Quintana was tagged with six earned runs on seven hits, a pair of walks and three strikeouts.
Charlie Blackmon put the Rockies ahead 1-0 after looping a base hit the other way, plating Kris Bryant, who doubled.
With the bases loaded and a 3-2 count in the third, Brendan Rodgers hit a changeup down and out of the zone down the right field line for a bases-clearing double as the Rockies jumped out in front 4-1.
Colorado added a pair the following inning courtesy of an Elias Diaz two-run single up the middle. Diaz added another RBI single in the sixth off of Chris Stratton.
The Rockies tagged Dillon Peters for a few in the seventh. C.J. Cron hit his 21st homerun of the season in the seventh to extend Colorado’s, and Rodgers followed with a homer of his own, giving the Rockies back-to-back Jacks. Ryan McMahon doubled in another run and eventually came around to score.
Peters came back out for the eighth and the inning began with three straight singles, the last of which plated another run for Colorado. Yonathan Daza’s sacrifice fly in the inning gave the Rockies a baker’s dozen and an 11-run lead.
The Pirates tied the game 1-1 after Josh VenMeter’s sacrifice fly plated Jake Marisnick. VanMeter was robbed of extra bases after Bryant went full extension to make a terrific diving grab on the play. Jason Delay delivered a two-out single, plating Cal Mitchell to cut the Rockies lead to 6-2 in the fifth.
Ke’Bryan Hayes extended his hitting streak to six games, which ties a season-high.
Mitch Keller (3-6, 4.88) will take the mound in the second game of this three-game series on Saturday afternoon. Jose Urena (0-1, 2.66 ERA) will get the ball for Colorado.
- Jake Rakes: Marisnick now has at least one hit in all five of his games after getting activated off the 60-day injured list earlier in this road trip. After his third inning double, Marisnick is batting .471 (8 for 17) with three doubles, two homers, two walks, three runs batted in and four runs scored over those five games. More known for his defense and speed throughout his career, Marisnick is showing that he is capable with the bat and is enjoying a hot stretch at the right time for the Bucs, who are currently without the services of Bryan Reynolds.
- Veteran Respect: While he certainly wasn’t on top of his game against the Rockies, Quintana threw a season-high 103 pitches to get through five innings on the mound for the Pirates. In the process, he was able to save a taxed bullpen a few extra pitches. That’s a good way to generate some respect in a clubhouse and show veteran leadership to a young team.
- Calm, Cool, Cal: Mitchell had a solid game for the Pirates in his first game back since being recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis. In his first at-bat, he hit a 99.6 mph line drive that came with an expected batting average of .600, but was caught. He recorded a hard-hit single up the middle with his smooth swing in his second turn at the plate. His best play of the night came in the field, as he ranged a far way to his right to track down a fly ball and rob Bryant of extra bases with a diving catch.
Cal Mitchell goes all out!
— MLB (@MLB) July 16, 2022