Rockies make Jimenez their No. 1 in October
Right-hander Aaron Cook is the elder statesmen of the Rockies rotation. He is lined up to start two at Philadelphia on Thursday afternoon.
Rockies manager Jim Tracy formally announced Jimenez as the starter in the playoff opener. He is 15-12 with a 3.47 ERA, lowest in franchise history for a starting pitcher. He also struck out 198 batters, second most in franchise history. Jimenez worked at least six innings in 29 of his 33 starts, including 28 of the final 29, and allowed three or fewer runs in 24 of the starts.
Cook is an obvious choice in Game 2 in light of the season-ending struggles of Jason Marquis, who failed in his fifth consecutive shot at a 16th victory in Sunday's 5-3, regular-season, ending loss to the Dodgers. Jason Hammel, the Rockies fifth starter, also pitched on Sunday.
Jorge De La Rosa, who leads the Rockies staff with 16 wins, had to come out of Satuday's start with a groin problem. A decision on whether he will even be on the post-season roster won't be made until after he throws a bullpen session during a Tuesday workout in Philadelphia.
Tracy said the fact that De La Rosa's start could be pusehd back until Game 3 or 4 at Coors Field next Saturday and Sunday would work to De La Rosa's benefit.
While Tracy said the reports were that De La Rosa has soreness on Sunday, De La Rosa was upbeat.
"It's not that bad," he said. "I will be ready. This is my first post-season. I will be able to pitch."
Cook, meanwhile, missed a month with shoulder tendinitis, but has returned with two solid starts. He allowed one run in eight innings on Thursday after working five shutout innings in his return to the rotation Sept. 25.
Cook is 1-1 with a 3.75 ERA in two career starts at Citiziens Bank Park, a cozy paradise for hitters where Cook's hard sinker can be a salvation.