Rockies Win a Road Series & Corpas Is Your New Closer (maybe)

Daniel DaytonContributor IMay 6, 2010

ST. LOUIS, MO - APRIL 1:  Relief pitcher Manuel Corpas #60 of the Colorado Rockies throws against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium April 1, 2008 in St. Louis, Missouri.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

Oh, that was a late game.  Why did I stick around to watch that thing to the end?  I was actually thinking while I was watching it, how would the Rockies blow this game?  One hit after the 6th inning was all the hits the Rockies managed off the Padres bullpen, and that was a slow dribbler to 3rd that Dexter Fowler beat out, until Ian Stewart’s  blast, gave the Rockies a 6-5 win and a series road win.  The Rox are back to .500 at 14-14 and 3.0 games behind San Francisco and the San Diego Padres who are tied for fist in the NL West.

This win had nothing to do with starter Aaron Cook.  He was terrible again.  His sinker was about belt high all game long, and he used his curveball, far more than he should.  He’s no Zito.  He’s not even Aaron Cook anymore.  I think he gets one more start, and if it’s as bad as his season has been, I think when Hammel and Francis comeback, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Cook go to the DL with some sort of sore something.  He needs some time off.  Or rather, I need some time off from seeing him.

This win had nothing to do with the Rockies “superior defense” as they had 3 more errors.  Also a base running blunder cost the Rockies a potential run so, we can’t credit “fundamentals”.  We can’t give credit to this win to closer Franklin “Nuke” Morales.  He came into the 10th inning, gave up 2 straight walks, and wasn’t even close to the strike zone. He’s not a great fastball that he can throw for 94 mph, but he couldn’t hit a mascot with it if he was told to do so.  Morales has no options left, he can’t be sent down, but he needs to be fixed.  It’s painful now to watch him out there.  

It wasn’t due to the Rockies great pinch-hitter Jason Giambi, who k’d in his pinch hit appearance, lowering his BA to .095.  Seriously I have no idea why this guy is taking up a roster space.  Clubhouse leadership?  Great…make him a coach, but he’s no longer a baseball player.  With Brad Hawpe due to come off the DL soon, it would assumed Eric Young Jr. would be sent back down.  However, Denver Post beat writer Troy Renck mentions that’s not a certainty, and that Seth Smith may go, “but there was zero chance a move will be made with Jason Giambi”  “Zero”?  There’s also a zero chance Giambi can hit the ball.  Seth Smith who is not exactly hot this year, is 3 for 9 pinch hitting with 5 RBI’s after last night’s game, at least he brings something to the team.

One hero, of course was Ian Stewart.  A timely home-run by the slumping slugger was what was needed.  Stewart didn’t start cause coming into the game he was 2 for his last 18 At Bats.  

But to me the real hero, was Manuel Corpas.  He came into the 10th, and cleaned up Morales’ mess, and Corpas pitched the 11th and the 12th innings, giving up only one hit, and one walk.  Corpas fastball is not what it was in '07.  He’s now throwing around 91-92, but he’s throwing a sinker, at around 88.  He’s able to hit his spots as well.  I’m not sure a sinkerballer is what anyone wants as a closer, but it beats a guy that couldn’t hit a mascot.  Yesterday I wrote that the Rockies had a gone to the dreaded “closer by committee”.  Today, I can say that the committee, now looks like one….Manuel Corpas.  Nothing was said officially about Corpas being a closer, but he's the only guy I'd bring into the 9th in a close game out of the Rockies pen right now.  I wouldn't bring in Morales in the 6th inning of a blow out. 

But knowing what I know about manager Jim Tracy and his love of micro-managing match ups that make no sense, Jason Giambi may be the closer,  or Esmil Rogers maybe a catcher, or Todd Helton might actually wear the Dinger costume, or Eric Young Jr. may start in left field.