HOUSTON — The Rockies need to be contenders. They need to be someone. They need to win the Nationwide League West.
The way in which they’ve been enjoying currently, all of these issues are attainable.
After profitable three or 4 towards the Dodgers at Coors Area, the Rockies swaggered into Minute Maid Park on Tuesday night time and beat ace Justin Verlander and the defending World Sequence champion Astros, 5-1.
The Rockies decked the Astros with a mix of punches, however none larger than the seven innings of one-run, three-hit pitching by German Marquez. Colorado additionally obtained two big house runs, one from MVP candidate Nolan Arenado and one other from Trevor Story, who smacked his 25th and prolonged his hitting streak to 11 video games.
Since June 28, the Rockies personal a 26-13 document, the most effective mark within the Nationwide League. Every of the 29 video games over that span has been towards a staff with a minimum of a .500 document.
The Astros, in the meantime, misplaced their fifth consecutive recreation general and their ninth straight at house.
Marquez was in command for the primary 4 innings, permitting no hits. He did stroll two and plunked Yuli Gurriel to open the second, however double performs ended each the second and third innings.
The Astros lastly cracked by within the fifth on Gurriel’s leadoff triple to right-center, adopted by Josh Reddick’s RBI single to proper. Marquez, to his credit score, hung robust, hanging out Evan Gattis and Martin Maldonado to attenuate the injury.
Marquez labored out of one other vital jam within the seventh. Marwin Gonzalez led off with a double off the left-field wall, and Josh Reddick was awarded first base after hanging out as a result of house plate umpire Fieldin Culbrith referred to as Wolters for catcher interference. However Marquez calmly obtained Evan Gattis to come out to shallow heart and induced Kyle Tucker to floor out to close the mound, the place Marquez made an athletic play to discipline the ball.
Marquez, who improved to 10-9, has not misplaced a street recreation since June 14 at Philadelphia. Since that point, he’s 3-Zero over 5 street begins with a 2.73 ERA.
Verlander, one in all final fall’s World Sequence heroes, dominated the Rockies by 5⅔ innings, yielding three innocent hits and hanging out 10. However then got here a looping, two-out single to heart by Carlos Gonzalez, setting the stage for Arenado’s heroics.
In his second at-bat towards Verlander, Arenado had pushed the ball deep to proper, he however didn’t fairly get sufficient of it. He didn’t miss the subsequent time round, driving Verlander’s 0-1, 96.eight mph fastball simply over the right-field wall for his 30th house run of the season. It was virtually a wrist-shot lengthy ball by Arenado, however the opposite-field shot had sufficient on it to present Colorado a 2-1 lead.
Verlander was attempting to find the 200th win of his profession, one thing solely two different energetic pitchers — Bartolo Colon (247) and CC Sabathia (244) — have achieved. He completed the night time with 11 strikeouts over his six innings, however the Rockies made him work, as evidenced by his 107 pitches.
Colorado prolonged it’s result in 3-1 within the seventh off reliever Collin McHugh. The appropriate-hander hit leadoff hitter Ryan McMahon, who scored from first on light-hitting catcher Tony Wolters‘ double to the right-field nook.
Story’s two-out solo house run within the eighth however the Rockies forward 4-1, and a triple by Ian Desmond, adopted by a bloop single by Charlie Blackmon accounted for the ultimate run.