Dan Haren pitched four magnificent innings and his offense had given him a lead. Unfortunately, Haren then pitched the fifth inning and gave up five runs as the Rockies batted around. By the end of the game, the Rockies had won 8-3 in the first game of the series at Coors Field.
The Nationals offense struck early against Rockies starter Jhoulys Chacin, staking Haren to a two run lead in the second inning. Ian Desmond drew a walk and Anthony Rendon singled to put two on. Kurt Suzuki grounded into a fielder’s choice, so Desmond was out at third. Haren sacrificed the runners into scoring position, and Denard Span sent a two run double to right field, plating Rendon and Suzuki.
Haren made that two run lead stand up until the fifth inning. Haren up to that inning was pitching well, keeping the ball down and hitting his spots. He was pitch efficient and it appeared he would be going at least six or seven innings. He began the fifth inning having thrown 53 pitches. By the end of the fifth, he had thrown 96 and his night was done.
Wilin Rosario drew the first walk given up by Haren. Tyler Colvin, in his first game back in the lineup after being sent to AAA and being recalled, homered to tie the game. D.J. LeMahieu struck out, but then pinch hitter Jordan Pacheco, hitting for Chacin, singled. Dexter Fowler doubled and then Nolan Arenado ground out. Carlos Gonzalez then put the dagger into the Nationals hearts, cranking a three run homer to make the score 5-2. Troy Tulowitski and Todd Helton both singled, bringing up Rosario again, who mercifully popped out to end the inning.
Then it became a duel of the bullpens. Erik Davis and Fernando Abad combined to get the Nationals two innings of scoreless relief. The Nationals tightened up the game in the top of the eighth inning on a single by Desmond, which scored Jayson Werth, who had drawn a walk to lead off the inning. The score was 5-3 and the National had hope.
Hope was extinguished when Drew Storen pitched the eighth, giving up three runs and another two run homer to Colvin. Storen then loaded the bases. Another run scored on a double play groundout, and Storen got out of the inning with a strikeout of Gonzalez.
The final score was 8-3, and the Nationals had failed to hit a home run in homer friendly Coors Field. Rendon came close, sending a ball 415 feet to deep center field, but needing another ten feet to get it out of the park.
Next Game: Wednesday June 12th at 8:30 p.m. EST. The Nationals have called up Ross Ohlendorf to make his first start of the year, while Colorado sends Jorge De La Rosa (7-3, 3.38 ERA) to the mound against the Nationals. The Nationals will have their work cut out for them against De La Rosa, who has pitched very well for the Rockies this year.