6/22/2014 10:00 P.M. ET
Learning on the job, Butler cleared to begin throwing
By Thomas Harding / MLB.com
DENVER -- Rockies right-handed pitcher Eddie Butler's time on the disabled list has turned out to be an educational period.
Since taking some medical advice to slow down his throwing program, Butler hasn't thrown, but he has been doing strengthening exercises -- some of them he had not done during his quick rise to the Majors. He'll be cleared to throw again Monday.
"They've been punishing me with exercise," said Butler, laughing. "No, they're just running me through all the strengthening for the chest, back, scaps and all that shoulder stuff.
"I was doing a good number of them, but not all the stuff I'm doing now. So there's definitely some extra stuff that I haven't done before."
Butler, who made a meteoric rise to the Majors after being drafted 46th overall in 2012, experienced unexpected soreness in his right rotator cuff after his Major League debut on June 6, when he gave up six runs in 5 2/3 innings in a loss to the Dodgers.
Butler seemed to be on the way back quickly. He threw at 140 feet and even threw off the slope of the mound last Monday at Dodger Stadium. But at the behest of his agent, Butler received a second opinion from Dodgers physician Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who found the same weaknesses the Rockies' doctors saw. After a consultation, the Rockies and Butler agreed to back off from throwing to address the muscle weaknesses.
Rockies head athletic trainer Keith Dugger said the pain served as a warning signal that Butler had not learned all he needed about between-starts maintenance during his quick Minor League time. Butler is less than two seasons from throwing once a week in college, as opposed to every five days as a professional. Because of his success in the Minors, he didn't diversify his between-starts routine and that eventually caught up to him.
"This is what his maintenance should be," Dugger said. "He was just young and didn't know. Sometimes good things happen when a guy goes on the shelf for a while. They learn that the routine they got away with when they were amateurs or early professionals doesn't work when you get up here, so you have to help educate them.
"It's not just when you're hurt. It's a preventative measure. It's the same as brushing your teeth every day. That's what you teach, how to get a routine."
Dickerson's stumble derails Rox's ninth-inning rally
DENVER -- Corey Dickerson slid into third with a bottom-of-the-ninth leadoff triple for the Rockies against Francisco Rodriguez Sunday afternoon, then saw the ball squirt away from Brewers third baseman Aramis Ramirez.
Home plate invited him.
"I should've have walked in," Dickerson said, wistfully.
Maybe if he'd walked, he'd have made it. Instead, Dickerson's mind said "run," but his tired legs didn't respond. After falling in the basepath between third and home, Dickerson was tagged for a key out in the Rockies' 6-5 loss to the Brewers.
The crazy play went against the Rockies the way it seems most plays, even the sedate ones, have gone during their six-game losing streak.
Dickerson's triple -- and stumble -- occurred with the Rockies down two runs. The following hitter, Wilin Rosario, homered to left field with one out. However, Rodriguez struck out Ryan Wheeler and forced a Charlie Culberson grounder to end the game. For Dickerson, regret was pointless.
"My legs completely gave out," Dickerson said. "I couldn't feel them, and I fell down. I was caught after that.
"Any other time, I would have done the same thing, hustled the same way. It was an easy run."
It was a strangely fitting end to Dickerson's memorable individual series against the Brewers. He had delivered three hits in each of the first two games, with a homer in each. But he couldn't celebrate a victory.
This time, Dickerson came to the plate 0-for-4, but drove Rodriguez's first pitch of the inning to right field. That's where the good fortune began to end. The ball hit the high part of the right-field wall. Slightly left, and Dickerson would have had a home run.
The ball caromed over the head of Brewers right fielder Elian Herrera and rolled hard toward the infield. Brewers center fielder Carlos Gomez, thinking the play was going to be at third rather than at second, ran around the ball. He picked it up later, but had momentum toward third when he made the throw.
"We actually had a play if he made a good throw to third base, but it was tailing away," Ramirez said.
The ball ended up bouncing against the screen in front of the Brewers' dugout. There it turned out, a Brewers misfortune worked against Dickerson.
Had Rodriguez backed up third, Dickerson would've stayed put. But Rodriguez slightly turned his left ankle on the pitch and couldn't make it over to be a factor. Dickerson started for home, then hesitated and fell. Rodriguez became traffic cop, directing Ramirez to throw to catcher Jonathan Lucroy for the easy out.
Of course, the play stood out even more when Rosario homered on a 1-0 fastball against Rodriguez, who was visited by the trainer on the field after the Dickerson play.
"I guess when you're good things go good," said Ramirez. "If [Dickerson] doesn't fall, Rosario hits that home run to tie it up. We'll take it any way we can."
But Rosario wasn't playing the "what-if" game.
"He's not going to throw me fastballs," Rosairo said. "Everybody knows that.
"There were a lot of crazy things in that game."
Dickerson sat in the dugout with his head in a towel once the game ended. Then he went in for time in a cold tub to begin reviving his legs to try again Monday.
"It just worked out how it was going to work out," Dickerson said. "We're going through a little rough patch. But we'll snap out of it."
Rockies call up reinvented Scahill from Triple-A
DENVER -- The Rockies called up right-hander Rob Scahill from Triple-A Colorado Springs and activated him for Sunday afternoon's game against the Brewers.
Technically, Scahill replaces right-hander Chris Martin, who was sent down to Colorado Springs on Saturday. Righty reliever Wilton Lopez joined the team Saturday, but the Rockies never officially activated him, meaning the club played Saturday's game with 24 players. On Sunday, they sent Lopez back to Colorado Springs and activated Scahill, who joined the team with two days' rest after throwing 36 pitches in an outing on Thursday.
Scahill, 27, is 1-0 with a 4.29 ERA in 29 Major League appearances covering 42 innings. A starter for much of his Minor League career, Scahill converted to the bullpen last year. This season at Colorado Springs, Scahill is 1-1 with a 3.93 ERA in 24 games, with extended appearances lately.
The Rockies should be getting a more versatile pitcher than they've seen the last couple of years. As he converted to relief, the Rockies asked Scahill to limit his pitch mix. Now they're letting him expand.
"I was working on fastball command, secondary command, continuing to work on my changeup, and they let me throw my curveball again, so I got that back," Scahill said. "I'm able to attack people with a four-pitch mix out of the bullpen.
"I always thought the curveball was an OK pitch for me but they wanted me, the last year and a half, to focus on my changeup and my cutter. Lately they've let me throw the curveball again."
In another pending transaction, catcher Michael McKenry was on the active roster Sunday, but he'll be placed on bereavement leave Monday for a family situation. Catcher Jackson Williams, a Giants supplemental first-round pick in 2007 who has hit .262 this season at Colorado Springs, will join the Rockies for the three-game set with the Cardinals starting Monday.
Anderson, Chatwood ready to toss live BP
DENVER -- Rockies left-hander Brett Anderson, who suffered a broken left index finger on April 12, and righty Tyler Chatwood, who suffered a right flexor tendon strain April 29, will face hitters for the first time since their injuries on Monday in a live bullpen session at Coors Field.
Both are quick workers and innings eaters that, the Rockies hope, will help the pitching staff by taking pressure off the bullpen.
Rockies head athletic trainer Keith Dugger said lefty Boone Logan, who began throwing bullpen sessions late last week, will need some form of rehab assignment before being activated.
Also, righty reliever Rafael Betancourt, coming back from Tommy John surgery last September, will face hitters for a second time in a live bullpen session on Tuesday. Betancourt, under a Minor League contract, has said he'd like to be pitching at Rookie-level Grand Junction by July 1 and work his way back to the Majors before the end of the season.
Bergman to have MRI on ailing hand Monday
DENVER -- Rockies right-hander Christian Bergman, hit on the base of his left hand/wrist area by a line drive in a loss to the Brewers on Friday, will undergo an MRI Monday to determine if he can make his next scheduled start Wednesday against the Cardinals.
Bergman threw a normal bullpen session on Sunday, but he couldn't take return throws from the catcher because he still couldn't close his catching hand.
In three starts, Bergman is 0-2 with a 7.20 ERA after being called up from Triple-A Colorado Springs. He struggled in his start against the Brewers, giving up three home runs and seven total runs on nine hits in three innings.
Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.