That’s what Rockies closer, Huston Street, said when I asked him if we were going to win tonight
Huston, everybody knows what Yoda said in Star Wars. “Do or do not. There is no try.”
This is not going to be a post bashing Street or any other Rockies player for that matter, but I did see something maybe I have never seen with the Rockies-no confidence.
In the beginning of the season, batting practice looked like a bunch of happy guys who were determined to win every game. Now it looks like a lot of serious faces taking frustration out on balls flying deep into the bleachers.
But these are serious times in Rockies land. Just last week the skip was let go and anybody I suppose could be on the chopping or trading block. I saw Rockies GM Dan O’Dowd in the stands last night and I couldn’t help wonder if he was feeling maybe a little less insecure about his position.
The Rockies had the lead by a run in the ninth and just needed Street to close it out. A few hits later and he was visibly shaken on the mound. You knew it was coming but would it reach extra-innings or the game over. Extra innings and my heart went out to Street. It was easy to see he was upset at himself. I personally think Street may be one of the nicest guys on the team. Hell if I had a sister or a daughter, I think I’d be fine with her going out with him just from how I’ve seen him act all these many games and how he has interacted with me. Class act and a gentleman he is.
But letting the lead go in the ninth is not getting it done. I’ve seen him pitch masterfully and no closer is perfect, but this could be the worst time to falter.
The closer wasn’t the only thing faltering. Leaving men on base has been killing the Rockies. In ’07 they knew the guy behind them was going to bring them in. Now it looks like they are clutching to win the game themselves. No confidence breeds bad results.
Josh Fogg, the once mighty dragon slayer, may even be weary himself. This is a picture before he threw the ball that would go as a walk off homerun. You tell me if he looks confident.
Josh Fogg by Tom Walsh
Before the game I had to joke with Garrett Atkins about the slump buster ball he signed. I told him I hope it’s helping because I did promise him it would break him out of his slump to sign the team ball and I didn’t want to be made out to be a liar. He smiled and said “It’s gotta turn sometime.”
I’m hoping not just for Garrett but the team as a whole it turns quicker than later.
In a previous post I talked about how I am not a Rockies apologist and the injury ridden season of 2008 was not something I’ll make excuses for. Somewhere in 2009 Tucson I keep having bad dreams of someone yelling,
“MEDIC! SOMEBODY GET ME A MEDIC!”
It’s happened again. Another injury has taken an intergral part of the Rockies pitching staff to the get well station.
After reading Rockies beat reporter Thomas Harding’s assessment it sounds like Taylor Buchholz is out four to six weeks with a strain of the ulnar collateral ligament in his throwing elbow.
No MD here but that sounds a tad bit painful. Last year I fractured both my elbows and hated life for a good month. At least Buchholz is only facing a strain but I’m glad his injury is the non-surgery season ending type. The Rockies suffered a blow to the starting rotation earlier this spring training when starter Jeff Francis decided to opt for season ending surgery.
Buchholz came to the Rockies in a four player deal with the Houston Astros before the ’07 season. The Rockies traded then starting pitcher Jason Jennings for outfielder Willie Taveras and unproven pitchers Jason Hirsh and Buchholz. Buchholz has been a bright spot of that trade of late. Taveras was non-tendered and signed with the Reds this offseason and Hirsh posted a lackluster 8.31 ERA last season.
Buchholz had been given a shot at starting but was soon relegated to bullpen duty in ’07. The ’08 season saw him as a very reliable setup man for then closer Brian Fuentes who signed a deal with the Angels this offseason.
The loss of Buchholz, hopefully for no longer than six weeks, would put the Rockies at a disadvantage for the beginning part of the season but would require righthanders Jason Grilli and Ryan Speier to possible move into the position to fill the need for now.
Hopefully from this point on the injury bug will fear the swat.
If not then higher powers can be brought in…