The last time they played the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Colorado Rockies held a four-game lead in the NL West and Franklin Morales and Felipe Paulino were both still on the roster. Just a few weeks later, the Rockies are 3.5 games behind in the division and neither reliever is with the team any longer.
Paulino, released a day after he allowed a game-winning home run to Prince Fielder, gave up the game-winning home run to the D'Backs' Justin Upton in a May 3 4-3 loss. Though the Rockies won the second game of that series, the third game wasn't as kind. Huston Street allowed two home runs in the bottom of the ninth to blow the save and then in the 11th inning, Matt Belisle replaced Morales (who induced a ground out before leaving) and allowed a double and an RBI single to lose, 3-2.
The series kicks off with a doubleheader to make up for April 3's postponement. The Rockies enter on a three-game skid and a 23-22 record. The Snakes enter somewhat surprisingly on a six-game win streak and a 23-23 record.
Joe Saunders starts the first game for the Diamondbacks. He's 0-5 on the season, hurt by a low-40s ground ball percentage rate (just two starts with fly ball outs under 10) and seven home runs allowed. He has a 5.02 ERA over 52.0 innings, but also 26 walks and 26 strikeouts as well. The Diamondbacks have been able to count on him to go for six innings usually. He is coming off one of his better starts, allowing one run over six innings to the Braves on May 18.
Jorge De La Rosa pitched masterfully against the Phillies on May 18 when he pitched an eight-inning complete game loss. The Phillies won that game, 2-1, through some questionable defensive plays by the Rockies to set up those runs. In the fifth inning, a single, a hit by pitch and a passed ball allowed Wilson Valdez to put a ball into left field for the first run of the game. In the eighth inning, a single and a sacrifice put a runner in scoring position. Then De La Rosa followed with another wild pitch, but Chris Iannetta probably should have played it better. But he didn't, and the Rockies were unable to put a second run on the board.
Tuesday, May 24
Game 1: Joe Saunders vs. Jorge De La Rosa, 1:10 p.m. MT, ROOT
Game 2: Josh Collmenter vs. Jhoulys Chacin, 6:40 p.m. MT, ROOT
Wednesday, May 25
Ian Kennedy vs. Jason Hammel, 6:40 p.m. MT, ROOT
Thursday, May 26
Micah Owings vs. Clayton Mortensen, 6:40 p.m. MT, ROOT
For more on the Rockies, check out Purple Row. Visit AZ Snakepit and SB Nation Arizona for more on the Diamondbacks.