Everyone was surprised by the Diamondbacks and the Rockies as neither team was supposed to be in contention this year, both of them went against the odds as both of their pitching staffs finally learned how to pitch in their respective stadiums. Neither team was able to overthrow the Dodgers for the division, but they both clinched Wild Card Spots and played each other in an epic slugfest on Thursday.
The game started out with a scoreless top of the first for the Rockies and the scoring began on the Diamondback’s side as Jon Gray channeled his inner Luis Severino and gave up a three-run home run to Paul Goldschmidt, and Gray’s night was over after Ketel Marte hit an RBI triple to bring the score to 4-0. Daniel Descalcio added onto the D-Backs early scoring with a 2-run bomb off of Tyler Anderson. Through 3 innings, it already looked like this game would be a blowout.
The Rockies had no intentions of going down quietly. Gerardo Parra kicked off the scoring for the Rox with a ground ball to center field for a RBI single, moving Trevor Story over to third. Trevor Story scored from third after Mark Reynolds grounded out softly to Paul Goldschmidt. Jonathan Lucroy made it 6-3 after a double to right that scored Gerardo Parra from second. Zack Grenkie’s night was over after Alexi Amarista singled to center to score Lucroy and bring the score to 6-4 Diamondbacks. The scoring was far from over.
Both team’s bats went quiet until the top of the seventh inning when Charlie Blackmon sac bunted down to second to score Lucroy from third to bring the Rockies within one run of the Diamondbacks.
Relief pitcher Archie Bradley responded to this by hitting a 2-run triple off of Pat Neshek in the bottom of the seventh. Think about that for a second, THE RELIEF PITCHER HIT A 2-RUN TRIPLE!!!
In the top of the eighth, Nolan Arenado launched a solo home run off of Archie Bradley and Trevor Story followed in his footsteps with a home run of his own for back-to-back home runs. The game was now 8-7 Diamondbacks.
In the bottom of the eighth, A.J. Pollock tripled on a line drive to center to bring J.D. Martinez and Jake Lamb home. The D-Backs now had a 3-run lead. Soon after, Jeff Mathis would single on a bunt to pitcher Greg Holland to bring across the 11th and final run of the game for the Diamondbacks.
Despite a single in the top of the ninth by CarGo to score a run, the Diamondbacks won the game by a score of 11-8 to end Rocktober.
No Wild Card team in 2017 had a starting pitcher that went longer than 5 innings and both games were dominated by the bullpens, and both games were high scoring with 31 runs scored between the two games.
Daryll and I both predicted a D-Backs victory in our Postseason Predictions Articles and we have both predicted a Rockies victory over the Dodgers in the NLDS. The next series in which are predictions are different is when the Huston Astros face off against the Red Sox (I predict a Red Sox victory while Daryll is leaning towards the Astros.
Stay tuned to see who gets the most correct picks this postseason.