The Colorado Rockies started 2011's interleague play on the right foot by taking two of three games against the Detroit Tigers over the weekend. Though Tigers ace Justin Verlander cut the joy short with a one-run complete game on Sunday, the Rockies will need to get back on track when they visit the Cleveland Indians to start the week.
Had this series been scheduled for Coors Field, the Rockies would look to improve their 7-2 record there, having swept two of three series. However, they will be at Progressive Field where they are just 1-5. They played two series over 2004 and 2005, and after the Rockies won the first game they have lost five straight.
With the San Francisco Giants dropping four straight, the Rockies are just 3.5 games behind them for the NL West lead. Starter Juan Nicasio will look to do his best to lessen that lead when he takes the mound on Monday night. After two so-so starts to start June, Nicasio turned in a solid outing against the San Diego Padres. He allowed just two runs (one on a leadoff home run) in six innings and struck out a career-high nine batters.
For the Indians, Fausto Carmona is a far cry from the pitcher he was in 2010 when he posted a 3.77 ERA. This year he has a 5.79 ERA through 91.2 innings (15 starts). While he's walked fewer batters per nine innings this season, he's been eminently hittable with 97 allowed. He's given up 14 home runs already, nearly 1.5 per nine innings. He allowed 17 in all of 2010.
First pitch is scheduled for 5:05 p.m. MT.
Expected pitching matchups:
Juan Nicasio vs. Fausto Carmona, 5:05 p.m. MT, ROOT, 850 KOA