Cincinnati Reds (60-60) vs. Colorado Rockies (46-74)
Thursday, August 14, 2014: 8:40 p.m. at Coors Field
It has been a fairytale season for Alfredo Simon in 2014, one in which he has seen himself maintain a spot in the rotation permanently, make the National League All-Star and even lead the league in wins at one point. With that being said, having hit his wall is understandable. His career high in innings entering the year was 115.2, which came with the Baltimore Orioles all the way back in 2011. Sitting at 143 coming into his start on Thursday, he is now winless in his last five games, four of which he has lost.
All the way back on May 10, Simon faced these very same Rockies at home, for what would ultimately be his first non-quality start of the year. He would allow five runs on eight hits without striking out a batter in just three innings of work.
Luckily for Simon, this Colorado lineup is drastically different than the one he faced over three months ago. The backbone of the order, Troy Tulowitzki, is out for the season due to hip surgery, leaving a gigantic void in the center of the lineup.
Here is the lineup he will face via the team’s Twitter account:
RF – Charlie Blackmon (2-for-3, 1 HR, 1 RBI)
CF – Drew Stubbs (0-for-2, 1 K)
1B – Justin Morneau (2-for-7, 1 HR, 2 RBI)
3B – Nolan Arenado (1-for-4, 1 2B)
LF – Corey Dickerson (2-for-3, 1 2B, 1 HR, 1 RBI)
C – Wilin Rosario (1-for-3, 1 K)
SS – Charlie Culberson (0-for-1, 1 K)
2B – D.J. LeMahieu (2-for-3)
P – Jorge De La Rosa (yet to face Simon)
Long-time Colorado Rockies veteran left-hander Jorge De La Rosa was feverishly spoken about in trade talks ahead of the Trade Deadline, much in the same way he has been for the past half decade. The de facto “ace” of the staff, De La Rosa is an astounding 51-23 at home at Coors Field, a pitcher’s hell on earth. Bizarre as it may be, De La Rosa’s career ERA is fractionally lower in Denver, opposed to on the road.
In his career, De La Rosa has had virtually no success against Cincinnati. Although he has made only four starts against the Reds, he still has 10 career appearances, which have led him to a 2-3 record with an 8.49 ERA. He has allowed 22 earned runs and walked 20 batters in 23.1 innings of work.
Unfortunately, for the Reds, De La Rosa’s most recent appearance against them in 2013 actually resulted in a quality start. Before that, his last time facing the Redlegs came all the way back in 2010. Much in the same way the Rockies lineup has changed, the Reds have undergone quite the overhaul in the last handful of seasons.
Here is the lineup he will be facing via the team’s Twitter account:
CF – Billy Hamilton (yet to face De La Rosa)
RF – Jay Bruce (1-for-7, 1 2B, 3 K’s)
1B – Todd Frazier (1-for-3, 1 2B)
C – Devin Mesoraco (yet to face De La Rosa)
LF – Ryan Ludwick (5-for-21, 3 HR, 4 RBI, 7 K’s)
2B – Skip Schumaker (3-for-8, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 2 K’s)
3B – Kristopher Negron (yet to face De La Rosa)
SS – Zack Cozart (1-for-3)
P – Alfredo Simon (yet to face De La Rosa)
Beginning a seven-game West Coast swing, the Reds look to snap out of their funk that has kept them a run short the last two nights back in Cincinnati. With the announcement of Homer Bailey heading to the disabled list, the onus will be on the rest of the starting staff to cover ground until he returns.
Simon vs. De La Rosa seems like an even matchup on paper, meaning it should come down to whichever teams executes in crucial situations. Check it out at 8:40 p.m. this evening.