We're only two games away from the start of the Colorado Rockies' 2011 season, their quest to capture their first NL West crown. Their schedule kicks off at home on Friday, April 1 with an Opening Day game against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The season starts a few days early for the entire league so that the regular season can end before the start of October. In turn, that would mean a World Series ending before Halloween (last year's World Series ended on Nov. 1). The Diamondbacks will have Ian Kennedy on the mound while the Rockies have NL Cy Young third-place finisher Ubaldo Jimenez toe the rubber.
After the three-game series with Arizona, it's a quick two-game home series with the Los Angeles Dodgers before a trip out East to face the Pittsburgh Pirates and the New York Mets. A little while later, the Rockies get their first taste of the defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants on April 18-20. By May 13-15, the Rockies will have had road series the Diamondbacks and Giants before playing their first series against the San Diego Padres.
The Rockies' playoff nemesis of late has been the Philadelphia Phillies, and the Rockies play in Philly on May 18-19. There are a number of quick, two-game series this season.
On the Interleague schedule, the Rockies host the Detroit Tigers (June 17-19), the Chicago White Sox (June 28-30) and the Kansas City Royals (July 1-3). They play on the road against the Cleveland Indians (June 20-22) and the New York Yankees (June 24-26).
After the All-Star Break, the Rockies kick things off on July 14 with a four-game series against the Milwaukee Brewers. Thirty-four of their 71 games in the second half of the season come against NL West teams. When the Rockies play their last series of the season, it will be against the San Diego Padres, September 26-28. By that time, hopefully earlier, the Rockies will have clinched the division.