The Colorado Rockies have been done in by their road record in nearly every season, and it looks like 2022 is going to deliver the same bad news.
Colorado began the season winning four of their first five road games, but the team has dropped 12 of the past 14 away from Coors Field, including a 7-3 loss to the Washington Nationals on Thursday.
The Rockies get another crack at ending the road frustration Friday when they play the second of four games in Washington.
Washington will send out right-hander Aaron Sanchez (3-3, 7.16 ERA) against Colorado lefty Austin Gomber (2-4, 4.11).
Sanchez is slated to make his sixth career start against the Rockies. In the previous five, he was 1-2 with a 5.67 ERA.
The Nationals have won two in a row for the first time since May 1 and May 3. Washington has lost 23 of its past 33 games to fall into last place in the National League East.
The Nationals, unlike Colorado, have been better on the road than at home, but the win Thursday came on the heels of a 1-0 home victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday.
Although it is not yet June, it appears Washington is looking toward the future. The Nationals also are being careful with their prospects. Reliever Matt Cronin, a fourth-round pick in 2019, has not given up a run in 16 1/3 innings of work in Double-A Harrisburg this year, but even if he looks ready for the majors, the team is not rushing him.
“We won’t abuse anyone in the process of learning their skill,” De Jon Watson, Washington’s director of player development, told the Washington Post. “Our job is to get him ready for the majors and get him there in one piece. There’s a progression we’ll follow, no matter how good his numbers are.”
The Rockies feel a little fractured after putting Kris Bryant back on the injured list due to lower back soreness. Bryant came off the IL last Saturday but was back on four days later.
“It’s frustrating, for sure, but it’s better to speak up and say something,” said Bryant, who played just two games before being sidelined again. “We aren’t where we want to be right now, and that’s frustrating. But sometimes it happens.
“Baseball is a rotational sport, and if your back is not where it needs to be, then you are just going through the motions. Almost in slow-mo, too. … That’s a tough place to be, so we just have to get it better.”
One bright spot for Colorado during this tough stretch has been Brendan Rodgers, who doubled Thursday to extend his hitting streak to 13 games.
Gomber is coming off a hard-luck loss to the New York Mets in his latest start, when he gave up two runs in seven innings during a 2-0 loss on Sunday.
Gomber has faced the Nationals twice and is 2-0 with a 1.42 ERA in those starts. One of those starts came May 4, when he held Washington to two runs over 6 2/3 innings.
–Field Level Media