Rockies starting pitcher German Marquez thrives as Colorado rolls Giants, 7-2 – The Denver Post
German Marquez pitched a gem and the Rockies’ bats came alive in a 7-2 victory Monday night at the Giants. Now, two unfamiliar words for Colorado — winning streak.
The Rockies (24-29) have won back-to-back games for the first time in three weeks as their playoff hopes, while slim, remain mathematically possible. Colorado — trailing the Brewers, Giants, Mets and Reds for the final National League wild-card slot — plays San Francisco three more times before closing the regular season with four games at the Diamondbacks.
On Sunday, Marquez earned his eighth quality start of the year, the bullpen held up, and Colorado featured seven players with at least one hit. The Rockies did it without third baseman Nolan Arenado after he was shut down for the season with a nagging shoulder injury earlier the same day.
“There was a good energy tonight,” manager Bud Black said. “A lot of contributions from a lot of players.”
The Rockies were lifted by a flurry of first-inning offense behind four singles (Kevin Pillar, Charlie Blackmon, Josh Fuentes and Ryan McMahon) against Giants right-hander Johnny Cueto. Fuentes and McMahon each drove in a run to lead 2-0 and Colorado kept its foot on the gas.
The Rockies padded their advantage in the third with a Pillar solo homer, and again in the fourth when a Cueto balk scored Sam Hilliard. In the fifth inning, reserve catcher Elias Diaz blasted a deep single that scored Trevor Story and Fuentes.
Colorado went up 6-0 and San Francisco turned to Wandy Peralta in the bullpen. The Rockies’ bats continued to feast. Garrett Hampson singled to score McMahon and their lead jumped to seven runs.
“Offensively, it was nice to get things going from the top to bottom of the lineup,” Pillar said. “Everyone just seemed really engaged and really energized. It was just a different feeling.”
Marquez, Colorado’s opening day starter, finally cracked in the fifth when he gave up an RBI single to Giants infielder Donovan Solano. Colorado stuck with Marquez in the sixth and he retired three consecutive batters to close the side. Marquez (3-6) finished his night with 100 pitches (69 strikes) and 12 forced ground balls in his first victory since early August.
Rockies reliever Carlos Estevez entered in the seventh inning, and after recording two outs, he gave up a solo home run to Alex Dickerson. The Rockies opted for Yency Almonte who retired the side. Mychal Givens pitched a scoreless eighth inning. Tyler Kinley closed the game for Colorado in the ninth.
The Rockies face the Giants again on Tuesday night for the second meeting of their current four-game series.
“Every game matters,” Marquez. “We have to keep working and keep winning games to make the playoffs — and I think we’re going to make it.”