April has never been kind to your average Rockies club.
This isn't your average team.
Off to their best start in franchise history, the Rockies took three of four from the Pittsburgh Pirates Sunday and ran their record to 6-2. The team also currently holds a one-game lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Rockies travel to New York tonight to take on the Mets, who sit in fourth place in the very tough National League East.
The biggest problem facing the Rockies right now seems to have been solved.
The offense has come alive the past two nights, after seeming to forget to show up Friday night. You can attribute that to a 14-inning marathon where both teams used up all their reserve players. They simply got tired.
It's true that Jhoulys Chacin had a rough day today, but until that fluke becomes a trend, there's no reason to raise a red flag. He's still one of the best young pitchers the Rockies have seen, and every indication points to him continuing that success. Chacin went six innings, giving up seven hits and five runs. Thanks to another strong showing by the bullpen, he got his second win while keeping his ERA at a very respectable 2.77.
Greg Reynolds had a very impressive showing on Saturday, and Rockies brass face a tough decision once ace Ubaldo Jimenez comes off the disabled list on April 17th.
Two important things came out of the win today. One, these Rockies proved they can thrive in one-run ballgames, and two, they proved they can win on the road. Both have been Achilles Heels of the Rockies for the past few years, preventing them from finding a lot of success. Right now, they stand at 3-1 on the road, and that mark should improve this next week when they face the Mets, who currently sit at 4-5.
They also face a New York rotation that is a combined 2-3. Mike Pelfrey, Jonathon Niese, and Chris Capuano all have ERAs north of six. The biggest challenge the Rockies will face will come in the knuckleballer R.A Dickey, whose ERA right now stands at a respectable 2.45.
The Rockies, if they play like we know they can, have a chance of coming home with 10 wins before April 15th. That's never happened for this team before.
The Rockies have two series against the Cubs, another against the Pirates, one versus the Marlins, and a series against San Francisco all before the calendar flips to May. Twenty wins before May 1st might not be out of the realm of possibility.
Their schedule sets up nicely for a couple of good runs before they hit interleague play in June, and if they can keep this up, the Rockies could cement themselves among the elite teams in baseball.