Tony Gwynn: Padres losing could continue
The Colorado Rockies don’t have much to show for their last two home games.
The Rockies try to break out of a minor offensive slump Tuesday night when they continue a three-game set at Coors Field against the San Diego Padres.
Colorado (7-5) has dropped back-to-back games at home, managing a total of only two runs and 13 hits. After losing 1-0 to Philadelphia on Sunday, the Rockies were beaten 5-2 by the Padres in Monday’s series opener.
Third baseman Garrett Atkins homered and drove in both runs for Colorado on Monday. Atkins has five hits over the last two games—no other Rockies hitter has more than two.
However, Atkins had two of Colorado’s three errors on Monday.
“We aren’t happy with our defense,” Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. “Sometimes you can clean it up with pitching or hitting. We didn’t do exceptionally well in any area.”
The lack of offense is even more surprising considering Colorado swept a three-game series from San Diego at Petco Park from April 7-9, scoring 32 runs and collecting 48 hits.
Even the presence of second baseman Jason Smith in the lineup couldn’t help San Diego. Smith went 1-for-3 Monday and is batting 9-for-16 against San Diego this season.
“It’s a left-handed bat, and Smitty showed up so well against these guys last weekend in San Diego,” Hurdle said.
Starter Josh Fogg makes his home debut for Colorado after opening 2-0 with a 4.76 ERA on the road. Fogg, who spent his previous four seasons with Pittsburgh, is seeking to go 3-0 for the first time since his 2002 rookie season.
The 29-year-old right-hander gave up three runs and five hits over 5 1-3 innings in a 5-3 victory at Arizona his last time out on Thursday. Fogg has walked only one batter over 11 1-3 innings for the year.
Fogg is 2-1 with a 4.41 ERA in three career starts against the Padres.
He went 1-1 with a 5.25 ERA in two career starts as a visitor at Coors Field.
The Padres (5-7) have played their best baseball on the road, going 4-3. San Diego relievers have a 1.35 ERA away from home this year.
Clay Hensley will make his first start of the season for the Padres after appearing six times out of the bullpen. Hensley, who is 0-1 with a 9.00 ERA over five innings this year, has been moved into the rotation due to the struggles of Dewon Brazelton.
“It’s weird how it works out, getting a start with the numbers I have right now,” Hensley said. But I don’t feel I’ve been hit hard, outside of the Colorado game.”
Hensley has made two appearances against the Rockies this season, allowing four runs and seven hits in a total of one inning.
The 26-year-old right-hander is making his second career start—he lost at the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sept. 10, 2005 after allowing three runs and four hits over five innings in a 3-1 defeat.