The Colorado Rockies are one of baseball’s highest-scoring teams, but their pitching staff has given plenty of those runs back.
Jordan Lyles hopes to help put a stop to that trend as he seeks a second straight solid outing in Monday night’s matchup with the host San Diego Padres.
Colorado’s 70 runs rank second in the majors to the Chicago White Sox’s 80, though the 69 it has allowed have contributed to an inconsistent start. The Rockies (6-7) dropped two of three to San Francisco in their last series, including Sunday’s 5-4 loss in 10 innings.
Justin Morneau and Wilin Rosario each hit their first homer, while DJ LeMahieu went 2 for 4 with an RBI.
Colorado’s pitching staff took another blow following the contest, as it learned starter Brett Anderson will miss 4-6 weeks with a broken index finger suffered Saturday.
”We have to play the hand we’re dealt with here,” manager Walt Weiss said.
Aside from Saturday’s 1-0 victory against the Giants, the Rockies’ best pitching performance came last Monday against the White Sox as Lyles gave up one run in 6 2-3 innings of an 8-1 win.
An injury to Tyler Chatwood – who gave up four runs in six innings in his season debut Sunday – opened a spot in the rotation for Lyles (2-0, 3.86 ERA), who was supposed to start the season in Triple-A.
The right-hander has made the most of his opportunity, which likely will be extended well beyond this start with the news of Anderson’s injury.
"He’s been impressive," Weiss said of Lyles. "It was a tough situation he was in at the end of spring training. He’s 2-0. It says a lot about the guy."
Lyles, who was acquired from Houston in November, is 1-2 with a 5.51 ERA in three starts against the Padres. He won’t be dwelling on those past performances, though.
"I think guys in general fall victim to worrying about their numbers," Lyles said. "I think I’m turning that corner."
Colorado hopes to improve on its 2-5 road record as it begins a four-game set with a Padres team that has won three of four following a rough start.
San Diego (5-7) got solo homers from Jedd Gyorko and Xavier Nady in Sunday’s 5-1 win over Detroit, while Will Venable added a two-run double.
"The pitching has done a tremendous job, and now it’s our turn on the offensive side to get some guys going," Nady said. "Hopefully (we can) get some runs early and get big hits and start playing well."
The Padres scored at least four runs for just the fourth time and their 33 runs on the season rank last in the NL. Eric Stults will take the mound in this contest, but he said he can’t worry about the lack of offensive production.
Stults (0-2, 5.59) allowed two runs – one earned – in 5 2-3 innings in the first game of Wednesday’s doubleheader against Cleveland, but he received no support in a 2-0 defeat.
”I can only control what I can control and that’s pitching,” Stults said. ”I can’t do anything about the hitting side of things, so I mean I don’t think that really changes my approach. I still want to attack the zone and get guys out. So to me, it’s not an issue because my job is to pitch.”
The left-hander has made seven starts against Colorado, going 3-0 with a 4.20 ERA.
Troy Tulowitzki, who went 0 for 7 in the series against the Giants, is 5 for 14 with two doubles and six walks against Stults.