05/23/12 12:30 AM ET
Marlins Park becomes 50th venue for Moyer
By Tom Green / MLB.com
On Monday, Marlins Park became the 50th Major League venue that Moyer has pitched in, which is the most among pitchers since 1921. The 49-year-old lefty seemed fond of the Marlins' new facility, which is in its inaugural season.
"It's a nice ballpark," Moyer said. "I mean, I like the mound. I got to look at places where I work, and I like the mound, I like the bullpen. ... They've got some nice digs here."
Moyer, who lasted just 3 2/3 frames in the series-opening loss, joked that he wasn't on the field long enough to fully take in the new ballpark. However, he said he will enjoy getting to check it out the rest of the series.
Moyer took the loss in his first start at Marlins Park, after going 8-2 with a 1.64 ERA in 10 career starts at Sun Life Stadium, the Marlins' former home. Despite the fact Marlins Park wasn't as kind to Moyer as Miami's former venue, he's still a fan of the new facility.
"Put it this way," Moyer said, "when you compare apples to oranges, it's eons better than where they used to play."
As for Rockies manager Jim Tracy, he liked what he saw on his initial walk around the stadium Monday, though he joked he needed to take a closer look at the 73-foot, animated home run structure in center field to analyze it. Although Tracy isn't sure what to think of the statue, he knows one thing for sure about Marlins Park.
"I know there won't be a two-hour rain delay," Tracy said. "We've run into that a little bit in the past. I think they'll like this park a little bit more than Sun Life Stadium, no disrespect meant."
Nelson rehabs as Pacheco rakes for Rox
MIAMI -- Rockies third baseman Chris Nelson made his first rehab start for Triple-A Colorado Springs on Monday night as he continues to work his way back from an injured left wrist.
Nelson went 0-for-3 for the Sky Sox against the Oklahoma City RedHawks in his first rehab outing since hitting the 15-day disabled list on May 16 with inflammation in his left wrist -- that stemmed from an injury sustained on April 25 while making a diving play against the Pirates.
"I did hear he put two balls in play," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. "He had two really good swings and put two balls in play very hard. Didn't necessarily get any results from it, but did OK from what I understand for the first day back."
Nelson was in the lineup at third base and batted third for the Sky Sox again Tuesday night against the RedHawks. Nelson is eligible to be reinstated from the DL on May 31.
While Nelson has been sidelined, the Rockies have been playing Jordan Pacheco -- who was recalled from Colorado Springs on May 5 -- at the hot corner, and he has responded big time. Tuesday against the Marlins marked the eighth straight start at third for Pacheco, who extended his hit streak to eight straight with a first-inning single.
Prior to Tuesday, Pacheco was hitting .333 (9-for-27) with a double, a homer, five RBIs and five runs scored. He was the only Rockies hitter to record multiple hits in Monday's 7-4 loss to the Marlins, as he finished 2-for-4 at the plate. But it's not just Pacheco's offense lately that has impressed Tracy.
"He's doing a nice job right now; he's doing a very adequate job, both offensively and defensively," Tracy said. "The biggest thing that jumps out at me defensively is that when he fields a ball, he's recognizing much better off the bat exactly what he has to do with it when the ball gets hit, not as it's getting closer to him.
"He's much more sure of himself. He's getting back to becoming an infielder, and you can see it."
Herrera could hit DL with hamstring injury
MIAMI -- Rockies second baseman Jonathan Herrera left Tuesday's 7-6 loss to the Marlins before the start of the sixth inning with tightness in his right hamstring.
"It looks to me like there's a strong possibility he could be a disabled list candidate," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. "I would say there's a pretty good possibility from what I heard in the dugout that we'll have to disable him."
Herrera got the start at second for Marco Scutaro, who went 0-for-4 Monday and had five hits in his last 25 at-bats. It was Herrera's eighth start at second this season.
The switch-hitter was batting at the top of the order Tuesday, and he led off the game with a single before coming around to score on a Todd Helton RBI single as the Rockies jumped out to an early 3-0 lead.
Herrera finished the game 1-for-3 before exiting in the sixth inning with the hamstring injury. He was replaced by Scutaro.
Herrera was the second player to leave the game with the same injury, as Miami left fielder Austin Kearns left in the top of the fourth after tweaking his hamstring on Giancarlo Stanton's RBI double to tie the game.
"The other thing we have to think about is if the situation is anymore than 24 hours or something like that, we can't play that shorthanded on our bench because the way we use Jason [Giambi] and things like that," Tracy said. "We just can't."
The Rockies are already without third baseman Chris Nelson, who is on the 15-day DL with a wrist injury and isn't eligible to return until May 31. Should Herrera land on the DL, utility outfielder Eric Young is a candidate to play second if necessary, as Tracy had him fielding grounders there before Tuesday's game.
The Rockies could also recall utility infielder Brendan Harris from Triple-A Colorado Springs for added depth.
Tracy praises Young for embracing his role
MIAMI -- Eric Young hasn't seen many at-bats this season for the Rockies, but he has embraced his role off the bench.
The fourth-year utility player had just 29 at-bats in 26 games entering Tuesday's action, earning three starts. Still, Young earned praise from manager Jim Tracy.
"I need to give a tip of the cap to this kid ... and the job that he's done," Tracy said. "I'm not necessarily saying that down the road that this is the role for Eric Young Jr. as he goes into his future, but I do have to say that in relation to the role that he's serving on our club right now, I don't think you could ask him to do much more than he's done."
Tracy went on to laud Young for striving to do his best day-in and day-out while embracing his current role as a utility player and late-game substitution. Before Tuesday's game, Young was on the field early fielding some ground balls at second base and shortstop, because Tracy wants him to have experience there should the situation ever call for Young to play the infield.
One particular aspect of Young's game that Tracy has been impressed with has been how Young has been using his biggest strength as a baseball player -- his speed.
"He's recognizing what it was that got him here and what it is that will keep him here, and that is he's one of the fastest guys in the league and balls in the air won't work for him," the skipper said.
While the sample size of at-bats is limited, Young has hit fly balls just 17.6 percent of the time, according to FanGraphs. Ground balls have been hit 41.2 percent of the time and another 41.2 percent have been line drives. During his first three years in the league, Young hit fly balls 22, 29.3 and 22.8 percent of the time, respectively.
"Hit balls on the ground and hit the ball sharply on the line, making people field the ball realizing that he's flying down the line," Tracy said. "It's going to get him to first base, get him opportunities to steal bases."
Tom Green is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.