Yes, there are 90 games remaining in the season. Yes, the Rockies are holding just a one-game lead on both the Dodgers and the Diamondbacks in the NL West. But already it has become one of those seasons to remember. And nothing underscored the improbability of what’s happening than the Rockies 7-5 victory against the Giants on Sunday afternoon.
Want to start at the end? Well, Nolan Arenado delivered a three-run home run off Mark Melancon in the bottom of the ninth to cap a four-run Rockies rally. And it was Areanado’s first career hit in 8 at-bats against Melancon.
–It completed the first cycle in Arenado’s career. He tripled in the first, singled in the fourth, doubled in the sixth, and after striking out to end the seventh hit the home run to end the game.
–It was the eighth cycle in Rockies history, the second that ended with a walk-off home run. Carlos Gonzalez unloaded in a 6-5 victory against the Cubs on July 31, 2010, becoming the first player in history to complete a cycle with a come-from-behind, walk-off home run, according to Elias News Bureau.
Areando also is fourth player in MLB history to end a cycle with a walk-off home run. Arenado is the 10th to complete a cycle with a game-ending hit of any kind, the fifth to do it with a home run.
|June 18, 2017||Noland Arenado||Rockies||Giants|
|July 31, 2010||Carlos Gonzalez||Rockies||Cubs|
|June 28, 1984||Dwight Evans||Red Sox||Mariners|
|Sept. 19, 1972||Cesar Tovar||Twins||Rangers|
|Sept. 14, 1961||Ken Boyer||Cardinals||Cubs|
Note: George Brett had a game-ending home run when he hit for the cycle with the Royals on May 28, 1979, but it was his second home run of the game. Brett had already hit for a home run earlier in the game, completing the cycle.
Also Dwight Evans was the Rockies hitting coach in 1994, their second year of existence.
Cycles in Rockies history
|Dante Bichette||6/10/1998||Tex||6||5||GW single in 10th|
|Neifi Perez||7/25/1998||StL||4||1||HR 0-1 pitch 7th|
|Todd Helton||6/19/1999||Fla||4||1||Four plate appearances|
|Mike Lansing||6/18/2000||Ari||5||5||Hits 4 consecutive innings|
|Troy Tulowitzki||8/10/2009||ChC||5||7||1st MLB SS 5-for-5 7 RBI|
|Carlos Gonzalez||7/31/2010||ChC||4||2||30th walkoff HR for cycle|
|Michael Cuddyer||8/17/2014||Cin||5||3||3rd player cycle NL & AL*|
|Nolan Arenado||6/18/2017||SF||5||4||Walkoff HR 1st hit off Melancon|
*-Bob Watson and John Olerud also hit for cycle in both leagues
–The Rockies swept a four-game series from the Giants for the first time. They had swept at least one four-game series against every other NL team — even the Astros twice before they moved to the AL. As well as the Astros, the rockies have swept two four-game series against the Cardinals, Mets and Dodgers. They have swept three four-game series against the Nationals, including one when the team was still in Montreal.
The 23 times the Rockies have swept a four-game series, their team ERA and the batting average allowed:
The Rockies have now beaten the Giants nine straight times, tying their longest-ever winning streak against a particular opponent. The Rockies won nine straight games against the Reds in 2008-2009 and against the Nationals in 2008-2009.
The Rockies swept the Giants in Colorado to improve to 46-26 (.639) over the weekend, but the D-Backs and Dodgers kept one game off Colorado’s tail, both teams improving to 44-26 (.629), with sweeps in Philadelphia and Cincinnati, respectively. This is the first time in the history of divisional play (that is, since 1969) that three teams in the same division had a .620-or-higher winning percentage on or after Fathers’ Day.
In addition to the four-game sweep, the Rockies swept three games from the Giants earlier this season at Coors Field. The Rockies have swept the Giants only `13 times in their 15 years of existence — four games once, three games 10 times and two games twice. And this is the first time they have swept two series in a season home or away.
|1st Game of Series||W||L|
|May 9, 1995||3||0|
|July 15, 1996||3||0|
|July 10, 1998||3||0|
|May 12, 2000||3||0|
|May 24, 2002||3||0|
|July 9, 2003||2||0|
|May 25, 2007||3||0|
|Sept. 23, 2008||3||0|
|May 16, 2011||2||0|
|June 13, 2014||3||0|
|April 13, 2005||3||0|
|April 21, 2017||3||0|
|June 15, 2017||4||0|
— The Rockies led 3-2 going into the ninth, but Jake McGee gave up three runs, including a two-run home run by Hunter Pence. They, however, rallied in the bottom of the ninth and are now 43-0 when leading after eight innings.
— DJ LaMaheu was hitless until he singled in the seventh, and then he singled ahead of Arenado’s game-ending home run. Shouldn’t be a surprise. He has hit safely in 70 of 85 career games against the Giants, including 30 games with multiple hits — two hits 21 times, three hits seven and four hits twice. And he did reach base with a walk in eight of the 23 games in which he was held hitless.
His .343 career average against the Giants is the best among active players (minimum 150 plate appeaances), Ian Desmond is fourth, and Arenado ranks seventh:
|DJ LeMahieu, Rockies||.341|
|Jon Jay, Cubs||.329|
|Chris Iannetta, DBacks||.325|
|Ian Desmond, Rockies||.321|
|Neil Walker, Mets||.321|
|Albert Pujols, Angels||.320|
|Nolan Arenado, Rockies||.320|
|Carlos Beltran, Astros||.315|
|Jake Lamb, DBacks||.311|
|Andrew McCutchen, Pirates||.309|
|David Wright, Mets||.308|
And it is LeMahieu’s third highest average against a team: