Grand Junction Rockies recap, Sept. 3, 2017
Ogden 14, Grand Junction 12
Sunday at Suplizio Field
Grand Junction 35-35 (17-15 second half), Ogden 44-26 (21-11)
On the mound
With a combined 26 runs and 34 hits, it wasn’t a great night for most of the eight pitchers who took the mound. Derrik Watson had a good outing for the Rockies, pitching two shutout innings in the eighth and ninth. He struck out four batters.
After the Raptors took the lead in the seventh, Justin Hoyt was the key to the victory, shutting out the Rockies the rest of the way. He pitched the final three innings and only gave up one hit and struck out three.
At the plate
It doesn’t get any better for an offense than what happened for the Rockies in the bottom of the fourth. Shael Mendoza started with a single to start an onslaught that turned a 5-5 game into a 12-5 Grand Junction lead.
There were eight straight hits in the inning. Casey Golden blasted his 18th home run to score three runs. Ramon Marcelino added a two-run shot later, and that was followed by a solo home run by Jeff Moberg.
Golden’s 18 home runs, which leads the Pioneer League, adds to his club record. He also had four RBI. Marcelino had three hits and three RBI.
The hitting star of the game was Carlos Rincon. The Raptors’ DH had four hits, two home runs and six RBI. It was only the second and third home runs of the season for Rincon.
In the field
This was an ugly game in the field for the Rockies, but there were a few highlights. Mendoza had two errors in the second inning but was also part of a nifty 6-4-3 double play in the fourth.
Catcher Javier Guevara threw out two runners trying to steal second for the Rockies.
The Raptors had two errors of their own.
The key inning
There were several key innings and after the Rockies took the seven-run lead, it looked bleak for Ogden. But the Raptors got a single run in the fifth and responded with a six-run sixth inning to even the score at 12-12. The Rockies were close to getting out of the inning after giving up a sacrifice fly for the second out. But the Raptors then put together five runs on four singles, a walk and a double. There was also a Rockies’ error in the mix.
Ramon Rodriguez had a solo home run in the seventh to give the Raptors the lead for good. Ogden added one more run later in the inning.
The Raptors took a 2-0 lead in the first inning, but Grand Junction responded with a three-spot in the bottom of the inning with Golden, Marcelino and Guevara with RBI.
Around the diamond
The loss was a tough one for the Rockies, who could have cut the Ogden second-half lead in the standings to two games. The Raptors now have a four-game lead with six to play. The Rockies have now lost four of their past five games.
Grand Junction vs. Ogden, 1 p.m., Suplizio Field
Starting pitchers: Justin Valdespina, GJ (3-5, 6.51 ERA) vs. Gregoria Sequera, Ogden (0-2, 6.70 ERA)
TV: Ch. 16 (KGJT)
They said it
Manger Frank Gonzales said this part of the season is a real grind for the young players:
“These guys are tired and we’ve played with about 11 or 12 healthy bodies for the last couple of weeks, so at this point we’re trying to figure out how to monitor our daily activities,” he said. “Not overdoing it on the field, not taking a (batting practice) at times, and organizing the lineup and giving a guy a DH day or possibly a day off at times. But these guys are just tired and we don’t have a lot of bodies right now.”
— Dale Shrull, The Daily Sentinel