ROCKIES

Rockies lose young prospect to a broken hand, then lose game as bullpen crumbles

May 25, 2024, 11:05 PM | Updated: 11:06 pm

Rockies Jordan Beck...

(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

DENVER — Jordan Beck is one of the players around whom the Colorado Rockies’ season revolves.

That’s because it’s less about the wins and losses and more about the development of their young players. And early in Saturday night’s 8-4 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies, they lost Beck — perhaps for a while.

The No. 38 overall draft pick in 2022 — who was called up to the major-league roster on April 30 — suffered a broken left hand on a diving catch of a Nick Castellanos line drive to left field in the top of the first inning.

Manager Bud Black announced the nature of the injury at his postgame press conference. The Rockies immediately pulled Beck from the lineup.

A stint on the injured list is a certainty for Jordan Beck.

Sean Bouchard, who was sent down to Albuquerque on May 21 after spending just over a month with the major-league club, could be in line to return as Beck’s roster replacement. He was lifted in the fifth inning of the AAA Isotopes’ game in Salt Lake City.

Jordan Beck struggled early after his call-up, posting a .139/.139 /.167 slash line in his first 36 appearances covering 10 games. Since then, he’s shown signs of improvement, posting a .222/.255/.422 line over 47 plate appearances, including a pair of home runs. He hit safely in six-straight games earlier this month.

Beck mashed in Albuquerque before his call-up, starting the season with a .307/.405/.594 slash line before getting his promotion.

But now, his progress will be on hold.

AFTER JORDAN BECK SUCCUMBED, THE ROCKIES BUILT A SLENDER LEAD BEFORE FRITTERING IT AWAY

The Rockies’ bullpen came through Friday night. Saturday night, it reverted to the form the that has it at the bottom of MLB in WHIP and batting average allowed, surrendering 6 runs in the top of the ninth to fritter away a 3-2 lead.

Reliever Jalen Beeks opened the ninth inning by walking Philadelphia’s Brandon March.

Bud Black inserted Justin Lawrence to relieve Beeks, and Lawrence promptly allowed back-to-back hits — an Edmundo Sosa triple and a Garett Stubbs single — to score the game-tying and game-winning runs.

Lawrence subsequently induced a 4-6-3, broken-bat double play to Philadelphia left fielder Kody Clemens, but then conceded a double to Kyle Schwarber and w walk to Bryson Stott. At that point, Black pulled Lawrence for John Curtiss.

For Curtiss, it was his Rockies debut, one day after being called up. It was his 18th Major League appearance since returning from Tommy John surgery that he underwent in 2021.

Curtiss faced Bryce Harper.

It didn’t go well.

With chants of “MVP” raining down from the Phillies fans who took over the stands on the third-base side, Harper promptly deposited a shot over the left-field fence.

Curtiss allowed two more base hits — and another run — before finally escaping the inning when Hunter Goodman and Ezequiel Tovar combined to throw out Nick Castellanos at second base.

Lawrence absorbed the loss, suffering his third blown save of the season. He now lugs a WHIP of 1.828 and an ERA of 5.91. But he is far from the only issue for the bullpen, which collapsed in Oakland on Thursday, sandwiching its stellar work Friday night.

“Right now, the bullpen has been very variable. So, it is frustrating,” Black said.

The collapse wasted a fifth-straight quality start from the Rockies’ rotation, this one coming from Dakota Hudson, who allowed 2 earned runs, 5 hits and a walk over 6 innings. The streak of quality starts — defined as starts lasting at least 6 innings with 3 or fewer earned runs allowed — is the Rockies’ longest since an 8-game streak midway through the 2021 season.

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