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Story breaks slump with HR, 3 hits vs. Padres

Rockies shortstop entered game on 5-for-21 skid
@harding_at_mlb
May 11, 2019

DENVER -- Trevor Story is the latest to put into action the adage that baseball requires confidence in the absence of results. And with a two-run homer Friday night in the Rockies’ 12-2 victory over the Padres at Coors Field, Story showed the results do come. Story went to bat

DENVER -- Trevor Story is the latest to put into action the adage that baseball requires confidence in the absence of results. And with a two-run homer Friday night in the Rockies’ 12-2 victory over the Padres at Coors Field, Story showed the results do come.

Story went to bat in the third inning not only with no homers in his last 25 at-bats, but mired in a 5-for-21 skid with his club 3-3 on its current homestand. Two of those five hits came in Thursday afternoon’s icy 12-11 victory over the Giants.

Box score

“I feel like I haven’t been driving the ball like I want to, but I’m just trying to have good at-bats,” said Story, whose first-pitch drive to center off Padres starter Eric Lauer was his ninth homer of the season. “It was nice to get one tonight. I was just trying to hit the ball hard, not trying to be too picky about it.”

During past slumps, high strikeouts were a big feature. But in this one, Story had just six -- not bad for a power guy -- with two walks and a hit by pitch. Manager Bud Black even noted that a couple of the strikeouts were looking, with pitches that were borderline and may not even have been strikes.

Story added two more singles.

“That ball [from Lauer] looked a little bit up, it must’ve been middle-ish,” Black said. “He took a really good swing on it. We’ve seen a lot of that from Trevor the last couple years.

“Talking about at-bats, they’re better.”

Story also had several strong defensive plays -- one in the first inning, another in the eighth. The beginning-to-end effort met a standard of intensity despite the score.

“There are times when you have to not get complacent,” Story said. “In a game like that, I didn’t want to do that. I’m just trying to make any type of play for the pitcher at any time during the game.”

Results are coming for some others, as for the Rockies -- who dug themselves a hole with an eight-game losing streak, but can push to .500 by sweeping the Padres.

• Ian Desmond, maligned for much of the season but often a victim of poor results despite contact that deserved better, singled three times, after contributing two triples and a homer in his previous two games.

• Daniel Murphy, who broke an 0-for-15 skid with a pinch-hit, RBI single Thursday, doubled in two runs during the Rockies’ seven-run fourth and added an RBI groundout in the eighth.

• Garrett Hampson, who went 2-for-3 after entering with a .186 batting average, helped the fourth by drawing a key walk -- after being hit by a pitch during a bunt attempt but not being awarded first base, on a disputed play.

Add to Story’s work, two hits and two walks from Charlie Blackmon (.382 during an eight-game hit streak), and two hits apiece from Nolan Arenado (.500, or 18-for-36, in his last eight games) and David Dahl, and the Rockies are continuing a trend of solid offense.

“We’re getting there,” Story said. “We still have strides to make, but as of the past two games it’s been pretty good, having good team at-bats and trying to get to the next guy, keep that line gong. When we do that, it’s contagious. It gives our pitchers room to breathe a little bit.”

Baseball, from a pitcher’s standpoint, is played in the park
Right-hander German Marquez (4-2) had an odd, but good-enough, line -- 5 2/3 innings, 10 hits, but seven strikeouts and just two runs. Marquez, who drove in three runs with a double in the fourth and has five RBIs over his last two starts, ended a string of 13 games in which a Rockies starter had given up a home run.

Many of the hits off Marquez were along the grass.

“When a ground ball goes through the infield, I’m not overly concerned,” Black said. “I’m overly concerned with what’s happened prior to this -- when a ball is elevated, and the ball goes over the fence.”

And the Rockies ended a club record-tying run of 15 consecutive games in which they allowed at least four runs.

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.