SAN DIEGO -- Rockies rookie right-hander German Marquez brought his usual bite on the curveball Friday night. His slider went from embryonic to full-grown. His fastball at times was sharp.But none of that, nor his career-high nine strikeouts, could remove the scowl from Marquez's face after his worst start in
SAN DIEGO -- Rockies rookie right-hander German Marquez brought his usual bite on the curveball Friday night. His slider went from embryonic to full-grown. His fastball at times was sharp.
But none of that, nor his career-high nine strikeouts, could remove the scowl from Marquez's face after his worst start in nearly a month. As a result, the Rockies lost for the fifth time in their last seven games, 8-5 to the Padres at Petco Park.
Marquez (4-3) gave up two-run homers by Austin Hedges in the fourth inning and Yangervis Solarte in the fifth and in all yielded six runs and eight hits in five innings.
"The fastball command wasn't quite there, and they took advantage of it," said Marquez, with first-base coach Tony Diaz interpreting.
Marquez had gone 4-0 with a 1.46 ERA in his previous four starts.
A Rockies offense led by Nolan Arenado, who doubled twice among his three hits, and Charlie Blackmon and Ian Desmond, who had two hits apiece, gave Marquez leads of 3-0 going into the bottom of the third and 4-1 heading to the bottom of the fourth. But Marquez let the leadoff batter on base and into scoring position with no outs in the third, fourth and fifth.
Usually, that's no problem -- he entered with a .154 batting average with runners in scoring position -- but he couldn't escape Friday.
"Today was a telling sign that German did not locate the fastball -- we saw it to Hedges, we saw it to Solarte," Rockies manager Bud Black said. "More than anything, his pitches were elevated and they took advantage of it."
If not for the small handful of fastballs that led to big disappointment, the action of Marquez's secondary pitches provided optimism.
"He had his curveball. He had his slider," catcher Tony Wolters said. "His slider today was sharp. That's a pitch he's still working on. Once that pitch comes around and he gets more confident in it, you're going to see a lot more strikeouts."
It could be chalked up as a bad night, but it could've been worse.
Marquez opened the fourth with his only walk, to Ryan Schimpf. With Schimpf at third and one out, Marquez reactively stuck his pitching hand in front of Franchy Cordero's 110 mph smash toward the middle. The next batter, Hedges, homered.
"I don't know if it had an affect on him, but it had an affect on me," Wolters said. "It hurt me. It sounded pretty hard, but he's a tough dude. He came back and started throwing hard again."
But Marquez, who will be evaluated Saturday, stayed in another 1 2/3 innings, with four of his next five outs on strikeouts. The result gave him more pain than the ball off his hand.
"They capitalized on the mistakes that I made," Marquez said. "At times, my fastball looked really good and I was executing off my fastball, too.
"I'll keep on learning."
Thomas Harding has covered the Rockies since 2000, and for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb and** like his Facebook page**.