There was a time Rockies pitchers were to be avoided like the plague, like wearing socks with sandals or, you know, the actual plague.
That time is no longer, at least for pitchers as talented as German Marquez.
Marquez carried a no-hitter into the eighth inning and finished with a one-hit, complete-game shutout of the Giants on Sunday. He struck out nine without issuing a walk, needing 105 pitches to complete the task.
“I wanted [the no-hitter] for him so bad,” Rockies catcher Tony Wolters said. “At some point, he’s going to do a no-hitter, a perfect game. He’s got the stuff. He’s such a competitor, and he’s so selfless. After the hit, all he wanted to do was to get us the win."
Marquez retired the first 15 batters he faced before plunking Kevin Pillar in the sixth inning to lose his perfect game. He continued on, though, retiring Giants hitters with relative ease until the eighth inning.
With one out in the eighth, Evan Longoria ripped a ground ball that bounded through the left side of the infield, past a diving Nolan Arenado. Unfazed, Marquez buckled down and struck out Pillar before getting Gerardo Parra to ground out, and he worked a perfect ninth to complete the shutout.
Marquez made a name for himself in 2018, going 14-11 with a 3.77 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and 230 strikeouts in 196 innings. He was even better in the season’s second half, posting a 2.61 ERA and 1.00 WHIP after the All-Star break.
He’s picked up where he left off, putting up a 2.00 ERA, 0.70 WHIP and 25/6 K/BB ratio in 27 innings after Sunday’s gem.
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Trout Set To Rejoin Angels
Mike Trout is back.
Trout will rejoin his Angels teammates in Texas on Monday after ultrasound imaging showed “improvement to his groin.” Despite the fact that he’s joining the team for their series against the Rangers, it’s not yet known when he might be cleared to rejoin the lineup.
Trout “will continue to be evaluated to determine his readiness to play,” a statement from the Angels said.
Trout hasn’t played since he left Tuesday’s game due to groin discomfort. The club immediately labeled him as day-to-day but never discussed putting him on the 10-day injured list.
There’s never an ideal time for an injury, but the issue came at a particularly inopportune time as Trout was mashing in the season’s first two weeks. The 27-year-old is hitting .406/.592/.938 with five homers, 12 RBI, eight runs scored and a stolen base through his first 12 games.
The good news is that it sounds like he’ll be back soon, possibly even during the Angels’ series in Arlington. Fantasy players in weekly leagues should strongly consider inserting Trout into their lineup Monday morning, even if he misses a game or two to start the week.
Vizcaino Shelved; Minter Up?
Shoulder inflammation could help clear up a murky bullpen situation in Atlanta.
Arodys Vizcaino was played on the 10-day injured list Sunday with right shoulder inflammation. The trip to the IL is the third time since the start of last season that Vizcaino has been sidelined by shoulder troubles.
“I warmed him up yesterday in the ninth inning and it didn’t feel right,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “Shoulder, there’s still something going on. So we’re just going to get him checked out and see where we’re at with him.”
With Vizcaino out for at least the near future, the door is open for A.J. Minter to put a stranglehold on the Braves’ closer job. Minter and Vizcaino each have one save on the year, with Minter owning a 4.50 ERA and 1.75 WHIP in just four innings of work.
The hard-throwing southpaw struck out 69 in 61 ⅓ innings of work last year, posting a 3.23 ERA while saving 15 games for the Braves. Minter is still available in 48 percent of Yahoo leagues.
National League Quick Hits: Braves optioned LHP Sean Newcomb to Triple-A Gwinnett. Newcomb lasted just 1 1/3 innings during Saturday's start against the Mets and had a 5/8 K/BB ratio over 12 1/2 frames in his three starts. He also struggled down the stretch last season for the Braves and will now get a chance to work through his issues in the minors. Touki Toussaint is going into the rotation in Newcomb's place. … Rich Hill (knee) will begin a rehab assignment Wednesday with either High-A Rancho Cucamonga or Triple-A Oklahoma City. He's slated for four innings and/or 60 pitches. Hill would figure to need an additional rehab start after that before rejoining the Dodgers' rotation. The veteran left-hander has been out all season with a strained left knee. … Marcell Ozuna went 2-for-5 with a pair of homers and four RBI as the Cardinals bested the Reds 9-5 on Sunday. Ozuna delivered the first big blow of the game when he took Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani deep for a three-run smash in the first inning. His second, part of a five-run seventh inning, helped the Cards put the game out of reach. Ozuna has overcome a slow start to collect five homers and 11 RBI through 14 games, and he's now hitting .275/.302/.627. He's also surprisingly stolen a pair of bases in the early days of the season. ... Julio Teheran was terrific in Sunday night's victory over the Mets, allowing just one run on six hits over his six innings. The right-hander racked up six strikeouts on the evening while issuing two free passes. The only blemish on his evening was a solo home run off the bat of J.D. Davis in the second inning. He'll look to replicate this fine outing when he carries a 4.71 ERA and 1.48 WHIP into Friday's start against the Indians in Cleveland.
American League Quick Hits: ESPN's Buster Olney reports that Dallas Keuchel is "open to a good one-year deal." It essentially backs up a previous report from Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, which said Keuchel was looking for either a one-year contract above the $17.9 million qualifying offer or a long-term deal at a lower salary. Olney says that the Padres "could be the best fit" for Keuchel because they're off to a good start and the National League West has multiple pitcher-friendly parks. San Diego also has a young rotation and could use the innings stability Keuchel would provide. … Indians purchased the contract of OF Carlos Gonzalez from Triple-A Columbus. CarGo needed some at-bats in the minors since he signed so late and he managed a 1.004 OPS and one home run in six games for Columbus. The veteran outfielder is in left field and batting third Sunday and figures to be a regular, at least against right-handers. He's a viable deep league option but is hard to trust in shallower leagues considering his lack of production the last two years while playing his home games at Coors Field. … X-rays on Andrew Benintendi's right foot came back negative. Benintendi fouled a ball off the foot Sunday, but he's escaped with a contusion. He'll surely sit out Monday for the Patriot's Day game but figures to be back in there Tuesday in the Bronx versus the Yankees. … Gerrit Cole struck out 11 over six innings, holding the Mariners to two runs in a 3-2 win Sunday. Cole gave up a leadoff homer to Mitch Haniger and a pair of doubles in the third inning but he was otherwise stellar, limiting the M's to just four hits in total without walking a batter and fanning a season-high 11. He's now got a 36/6 K/BB ratio over 25 innings, posting a 3.24 ERA and 0.92 WHIP through four starts. The win was surprisingly his first of the year despite those numbers, and he'll look to make it a winning streak Sunday against the Rangers ... Billy Hamilton (knee) could return to the Royals' lineup on Monday. Hamilton missed a third straight start Sunday after spraining his left knee Thursday, but he is feeling much better. Chris Owings started in center field Sunday. … David Price worked seven scoreless innings in Boston's 4-0 victory over the Orioles on Sunday. Price allowed just three hits and didn't issue a walk while striking out seven Baltimore batters. This is the first win of the season for the 33-year-old left-hander, who surrendered eight earned runs over his first two starts covering 12 innings. Price is scheduled to pitch against the Rays at Tropicana Field next time out. … Blue Jays optioned INF Lourdes Gurriel to Triple-A Buffalo. The slumping infielder was hitting just .175/.250/.275 with no homers, seven RBI and a 12/3 K/BB ratio in his first 44 plate appearances. The future is still bright for the 25-year-old, but he'll work through his issues in the minor leagues. Eric Sogard is expected to have his contract purchased from Buffalo as a corresponding move on Monday.