Results tagged ‘ Ryan Ludwick ’

But it’s still the defensive play of the year

Rockies second baseman Clint Barmes confirmed what the camera of an eagle-eyed fan showed. He did not have possession of the ball throughout his ninth-inning play, which was ruled a catch. Barmes made the play on a soft Ryan Ludwick pop with runners at first and third in the ninth inning. Barmes then doubled Albert Pujols off first base, ending the Rockies’ 4-3 victory.

Some thoughts on the play:

– If you don’t call it “the catch of the year,” it’s still the defensive play of the year. To hit the ground that hard and roll over, yet not have the ball squirt away is a feat in and of itself.

– What’s the big deal? The play isn’t reviewable. And it’s not like Barmes is going to stand up and say, “That ball landed.” Even if he did, I don’t think there’s anything in the rule book to allow for that. (Please correct me if I’m wrong.)

– It’s good it wasn’t a postseason game. The umpire down the right-field line would have been at roughly the same angle as the camera.

Barmes’ quotes in an arranged media meeting on Tuesday weren’t much different from when I talked to him on Sunday afternoon. I asked him then if the ball hit the ground, and he said he didn’t know.

“I really don’t know anything other than what I said on Sunday,” Barmes said. “It all happened so fast and the ball ended up in my hand somehow and I wasn’t sure if it was from off the ground or before it hit the ground. All I know is whenever I rolled and popped up, the ball was in my hand perfectly like I’d reached down and grabbed it.”

 

Bull(pen)ish on Contreras

Right-hander Jose Contreras, who joined the Rockies in an Aug. 31 trade to help the starting rotation, has looked good enough in two relief appearances to get manager Jim Tracy thinking.

Tracy used Contreras on Friday and Saturday against the Cardinals. Other than a Ryan Ludwick home run during Friday’s 2-1 Rockies victory, Contreras has been stellar. His fastball is traveling at around 95 mph — faster than when he starts.

Tracy has no intention of using him on Sunday, and he must have him available for possible multiple innings Thursday when Aaron Cook makes his second start since returning from a shoulder injury.

The use of Contreras must make sense. For example, Tracy is using him to start innings rather than having him jump into tight situations. But having an arm like that in the bullpen could be a boon to the Rockies in the postseason, provided they hold off the charging Braves.

Tracy said relief pitching could be a part of Contreras’ future, if he is interested.

“He was throwing the ball as hard, maybe harder, last night as the night before,” Tracy said. “This is a strong man. Can he handle doing something like that [beyond this season]? That’s a conversation for down the road.

“But we’re at a point of the season where you use your resources, whatever makes sense. What we’ve seen the last couple of nights makes sense. If that makes us as good as we can possibly be in the postseason, we’ll entertain it.

“The next conversation is over the long haul, is he comfortable with something like that? Would he entertain an idea like that? Would he dismiss it and say, ‘I want to start. I’m a starting pitcher.’ You have to have a respect factor for a man of his stature. This is not his first or second year in professional baseball.”

 

Stewart, Barmes in, Atkins out for Cards finale

Rockies manager Jim Tracy, needing to stay with the hot bats of Ian Stewart and Clint Barmes, left third baseman Garrett Atkins out of the lineup for Monday’s finale of a four-game set with the Cardinals at Busch Stadium.

Tracy insisted, however, that Atkins is not going to be buried on the bench. Tracy will look for favorable matchups, try to put him in key pinch-hit situations and see if he can make Atkins a viable lineup option. Atkins has shown life lately, but he is batting .189 with fivfe home runs and 20 RBIs.

“In no way do I want to be having people thinking or suggesting that that’s it with Garrett Atkins, but because of where we’re at right now I am in a position to pick spots for the time being that make the most sense,” Tracy said.

Here are Monday’s lineups:

Rockies

Dexter Fowler, CF

Clint Barmes, 2B

Todd Helton, 1B

Brad Hawpe, RF

Troy Tulowitzki, SS

Carlos Gonzalez, LF

Paul Phillips, C

Jason Marquis, P

Cardinals

Skip Schumaker, 2B

Colby Rasmus, CF

Albert Pujols, 1B

Ryan Ludwick, RF

Chris Duncan, LF

Yadier Molina, C

Tyler Greene, 3B

Brad Thompson, P

Brendan Ryan, SS

Fowler resting calf

Rockies manager Jim Tracy gave rookie center fieler Dexter Fowler some rest time Saturday. Fowler fouled a pitch off his right calf Friday night, and had the area heavly taped Saturday. Seth Smith replaced him atop the order. It was also Carlos Gonzalez’s first start in center field for the Rockies. Here are the lineups for the Rockies-Cardinals game:

Rockies

Seth Smith, LF

Clint Barmes, SS

Todd Helton, 1B

Garrett Atkins, 3B

Brad Hawpe, RF

Ian Stewart, 2B

Carlos Gonzalez, CF

Edwin Bellorin, C

Aaron Cook, P

Cardinals

Skip Schumaker, 2B

Rick Ankiel, CF

Albert Pujols, 1B

Ryan Ludwick, RF

Chris Duncan, LF

Jason LaRue, C

Joe Thurston, 3B

Todd Wellemeyer, P

Tyler Greene, SS

 

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