More confident Mariners look to take advantage of scuffling Rockies

Field Level Media

April 18, 2024 at 11:05 pm.

The Seattle Mariners are coming off of a successful homestand and now face a scuffling Colorado Rockies team that had a forgettable road trip.

Seattle ended its homestand with a three-game sweep of the Cincinnati Reds, bouncing back from dropping two of three to the Chicago Cubs, and gained confidence heading into a six-game trip that begins Friday night in Denver.

The Mariners will send Emerson Hancock (1-2, 7.98 ERA) in the first of three games at Colorado while the Rockies will counter with Dakota Hudson (0-3, 4.15).

This will be the first time either pitcher has faced the opponent.

Hancock will have a tough act to follow after four pitchers combined on a one-hitter in Wednesday’s 5-1 win over Cincinnati.

“We are driven by our pitching staff and playing really good defense, and I think that’s the thing that stood out for me here over the last probably week or so is we have played much cleaner baseball,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said.

The Mariners gave up just five runs in the three games against the Reds.

“This pitching has been keeping us afloat, we’ve been winning some tight games,” designated hitter Mitch Garver said. “If we can continue to lay off the balls, hit the strikes, we’re in a good spot.”

Hancock got roughed up for eight earned runs in 3 1/2 innings at Milwaukee on April 7 but pitched well in a 4-1 loss to the Cubs on Saturday.

Now, the Mariners head to the thin air of Colorado, and Hancock might benefit from the cool, wet weather that is forecast for Denver on Friday night. The gloomy conditions are an apt reflection of how things are going for the Rockies.

Colorado has lost five in a row and is tied with Miami for the worst record in the National League. The Rockies were shut out twice during their 1-5 road trip that ended with a sweep in Philadelphia.

Colorado is focusing on small victories, such as rallying for five late runs in a 7-6 loss to the Phillies on Wednesday night.

“That’s our group. That doesn’t surprise me,” Rockies manager Bud Black said of the near comeback. “This is a great group of competitors. We’re falling short right now. But they won’t melt. They’ll keep fighting and these things will turn.”

Colorado has played just six of its first 19 games at home this season and hopes it can find some traction when it opens a nine-game homestand against the Mariners. Hudson is seeking his first win with the Rockies.

Colorado will be without Kris Bryant until at least Wednesday. The 2016 NL MVP has experienced back stiffness after crashing into the wall in Toronto on Saturday and was placed on the injured list, retroactive to Sunday.

Bryant has spent considerable time on the IL since signing a seven-year, $182 million deal with the Rockies before the 2022 season. Bryant, who is hitting .149 this year, has played in just 135 games with Colorado.

ALL  |  NFL  |  College Football  |  MLB  |  NBA