Results tagged ‘ Michael Bourn ’

Helton welcomes Hudson to Coors Field

This has been a beautiful day in Denver. The temperature on the Coors Field scoreboard reads 86, the breeze is gentle.

But forgive Braves pitcher Tim Hudson if he thinks he has just arrived at prison and the Rockies’ Todd Helton is the warden.

Hudson is 0-2 with a 7.77 ERA in four career starts at Coors. And Helton is 9-for-1o against Hudson at his home.

What’s funny is the numbers are the total opposite at Turner Field, where Helton is 4-0 with a 1.84 ERA in four career starts against the Rockies, and has held Helton to 1-for-5.

The Rockies have brought up onetime White Sox right-hander Carlos Torres, who went 2-1 with a 2.88 ERA in five starts at Triple-A Colorado Springs. Torres, 29, will be used as a long man in the bullpen. Depending on how he’s used the next couple of days, he could be called upon to start Tuesday against the Padres if right-hander Jeremy Guthrie is not ready to return from a recent shoulder injury.

Guthrie, by the way, threw a touch-and-feel bullpen session today and will face hitters at Coors before Saturday night’s game with the Braves.

Braves veteran Chipper Jones announced this spring that this would be his final season. He’s going out with a blast. The Braves have gone 11-2 with him in the starting lineup and Jones has had at least one hit in eight of those 13 starts. He’s hitting second for the Braves tonight.

As Mark Bowman of MLB.com notes, Jones batted just .191 with a home run and a .623 OPS (on-base percentage plus slugging percentage) in his first 11 regular season games at Coors Field. Since then, however, Jones has batted .356 with 11 home runs and a 1.104 OPS in his past 46 road games against the Rockies. No wonder he has shaken off a sore left knee to be in the lineup tonight.

Rockies center fielder Dexter Fowler grew up in the Atlanta area, and the stats suggest he still loves the Braves. Fowler has batted .306 in 20 career games against the Braves. Helton (.332), the sizzling Carlos Gonzalez (.318) and shortstop Troy Tulowitzki (.311) also are better than .300 against the Braves.

Now for the lineups.

BRAVES

1. Michael Bourn, CF (.321, 0 HR, 6 RBIs)

2. Chipper Jones, 3B (.273, 4 HR, 14 RBIs)

3. Freddie Freeman, 1B (.280, 4 HR, 19 RBIs)

4. Brian McCann, C (.241, 5 HR, 14 RBIs)

5. Dan Uggla, 2B (.265, 3 HR, 15 RBIs)

6. Jason Heyward, RF (.272, 2 HR, 11 RBIs)

7. Eric Hinske, LF (.357, 0 HR, 4 RBIs)

8. Jack Wilson, SS (.138, 0 HR, 3 RBIs)

9. Tim Hudson, RHP (1-0, 3.60 ERA)

ROCKIES

1. Marco Scutaro, 2B (.275, 0 HR, 1 RBI)

2. Jonathan Herrera, 3B (.265, 1 HR, 3 RBIs)

3. Carlos Gonzalez, LF (.310, 7 HRs, 23 RBIs)

4. Troy Tulowtizki, SS (.280, 3 HR, 13 RBIs)

5. Todd Helton, 1B (.236, 4 HR, 17 RBIs)

6. Michael Cuddyer, RF (.282, 2 HR, 12 RBIs)

7. Ramon Hernandez, C (.279, 4 HR, 14 RBIs)

8. Dexter Fowler, CF (.240, 4 HR, 11 RBIs)

9. Guillermo Moscoso, RHP (0-1, 10.80 ERA)

Needing offense, or some semblance of it

The Rockies are without shortstop Troy Tulowitzki for Wednesday night’s game with the Astros. Manager Jim Tracy’s position on Tuesday night was to use Omar Quintanilla at shortstop, with Clint Barmes at second base.

But when he determined his lineup card, Tracy went with Ian Stewart at second and Barmes at short.

Manager Jim Tracy’s position was Stewart poses more of an offensive threat than Quintanilla. Even Tracy said the Astros won’t be fearing Stewart’s .177 batting average. But Stewart has three hits off the Astros this year. All are home runs.

Here are the lineups for Wednsday:

Rockies

Dexter Fowler, CF

Clint Barmes, SS

Todd Helton, 1B

Brad Hawpe, RF

Garrett Atkins, 3B

Seth Smith, LF

Ian Stewart, 2B

Paul Phillips, C

Jason Marquis, P

Astros

Michael Bourn, CF

Miguel Tejada, SS

Hunter Pence, RF

Carlos Lee, LF

Lance Berkman, 1B

Ivan Rodriguez, C

Geoff Blum, 3B

Edwin Maysonet, 2B

Brian Moehler, P

Rehab city

Left-hander Franklin Morales, coming back from a throwing shoulder strain, had as good a first rehab assignment as the Rockies could have expected on Sunday.

Morales went four innings and gave up two runs on five hits, and threw strikes on 48 of his 72 pitches.

“I talked to a lot of people, and he had a tough first inning and got better after that,” Rockies general manager Dan O’Dowd said. “He threw 86-94 mph, averaged 91-92. He showed good arm strength, his delivery was better. He’s still a work in progress, but it’s a good first step.”

Rockies manager Jim Tracy said Morales will receive another start, then the Rockies will evaluate him.

Right-hander Matt Daley (sprained left foot) is scheduled to throw an innning in Colorado Springs on Monday night, but rain is threatening that. Tracy said his rehab should be a short one.Catcher Chris Iannetta (strained right hamstrings) is due to join the Colorado Springs club on Tuesday. Tracy said there is a chance Iannetta will rejoin the club in Milwaukee at the end of the current road trip.

Now, for the guys who are here at Minute Maid Park for a three-game series with the Astros. …

Center fielder Dexter Fowler receives a rest, and Ryan Spilborghs leads off and plays center.

Rockies

Ryan Spilborghs, CF

Clint Barmes, 2B

Todd Helton, 1B

Garrett Atkins, 3B

Brad Hawpe, RF

Seth Smith, LF

Troy Tulowitzki, SS

Yorvit Torrealba, C

Aaron Cook, P

Astros

Michael Bourn, CF

Miguel Tejada, SS

Hunter Pence, RF

Carlos Lee, LF

Lance Berkman, 1B

Ivan Rodriguez, C

Jeff Keppinger, 3B

Edwin Maysonet, 2B

Roy Oswalt, P

 

Go Pens! … Nothing wrong with Barmes

As I write, the Penguins are up on the Capitals, 4-0, in the second period of Game 7. How cool.

Good comment on yesterday’s blog: infielder Clint Barmes has been notably absent from the starting lineup, and he isn’t starting tonight, either. It would make some sense to have him at second as another left-handed bat against Astros lefty Mike Hampton. Plus, Barmes hasn’t been in the lineup since Friday, when he went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts against the Marlins.

Checked with Barmes today. He’s not injured and says he’s ready to play when needed.

A few factors keep Barmes out of the lineup:

– The Rockies are giving third baseman Garrett Atkins more time to overcome his almost season-long hitting slump. Manager Clint Hurdle said he gives a younger player abotu 100 at-bats and a player of Atkins’ experience about 150 at-bats to find his form.

– Stewart hit two home runs last night agianst the Astros. He also has a history of hitting lefties well.

“I want to see him against this left-hander, Mike [Hampton],” Hurdle said. “We know him a little bit, not that ‘Stew’ does. Just watching tape and historically, Mike gets outs. There’s no doubt he can get people out. His walks-to-strikeouts ratio is better against left-handers but the batting average is pretty similar, .284 to .281.

“‘Stew’ still has a pretty good history of hitting left-handed pitching. [Thursday starter Wandy] Rodriguez could present more of a challenge. He’s just off to a tremendous start this year, overall and especially against left-handed hitters. And I want to play off the momentum he was able to create and bring to the table yesterday.”

Here are both lineups:

Astros

Kazuo Matsui            2B

Michael Bourn           CF

Lance Berkman         1B

Carlos Lee                 LF

Miguel Tejada            SS

Hunter Pence            RF

Geoff Blum                3B

Humberto Quintero      C

Mike Hampton            P

Rockies

Dexter Fowler           CF

Troy Tulowitzki         SS

Todd Helton              1B

Ryan Spilborghs        LF

Brad Hawpe              RF

Garrett Atkins           3B

Chris Iannetta             C

Ian Stewart                2B

Jason Marquis             P

No hot seat, but still …

I’ve been asked on a number of radio shows recently about the jobsecurity of Rockies manager Clint Hurdle. It’s logical. After all, the D-backs fired Bob Melvin, and that team had a slightly better record than the Rockies. I said all along that it’s not the Rockies’ style to make such a quick change. None of my sources have said anything different. If there was heat, it was from the outside. A story in the Denver Post today confirms; ownership isn’t looking to make the big change.

Anyhow, here’s the issue: they’ve got to score to win. The Rockies’ pitching was supposed to be weak, yet the staff leads the National league with a 2.81 ERA in May. Their May record is 4-6 going into Tuesday night’s game against the Astros at Coors Field.

hHit and everyone stays employed. Or at least that’s the way it seems to me.

Shortstop Troy Tulowitzki will do his part tonight. The pain from the quadriceps strain he suffered Sunday is manageable, so he’s in the lineup. 

Here are tonight’s lineups:

Astros

Kazuo Matsui                   2B

Michael Bourn                  CF

Lance Berkman                1B

Carlos Lee                        LF

Miguel Tejada                   SS

Hunter Pence                   RF

Geoff Blum                       3B

Ivan Rodriguez                   C

Felipe Paulino                   P

Rockies

Dexter Fowler                  CF

Troy Tulowitzki                SS

Todd Helton                    1B

Brad Hawpe                    RF

Garrett Atkins                 3B

Seth Smith                     LF

Chris Iannetta                   C

Ian Stewart                     3B

Ubaldo Jimenez                P

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