The start of the 2014 season has been an interesting and discouraging one for Rockies fans regarding ace pitcher Jorge De La Rosa. Just a season removed from tying a career-high in wins with 16, the lefty has faltered in his first three starts. Last season, De La Rosa would go 16-6 with a 3.49 ERA, striking out 112 batters in 167.2 innings pitched. The start of this season has been a disaster with his command being very shaky. Tonight, he looks to bounce back against the San Diego Padres in-game three of a four-game set.
As of right now, I’m not worried about the lefty who won 16 games last season as I believe he will get his command back on track. He has struggled with pitch count, especially on 4/5 against the Arizona Diamondbacks with 101 pitches in just 4 1/3 of an inning. De La Rosa has yet to make it out of the fifth inning, throwing just 4.1 innings pitched in all three of his starts. He is currently 0-2 with an inflated ERA of 9.69.
3/31: @ Miami: 4.1 innings pitched, 4 hits, 5 runs, 5 earned, 1 HR, 2 BB, 6 SO.
4/5: vs. Arizona: 4.1 innings pitched, 4 hits, 4 runs, 3 earned, 1 HR, 3 BB, 4 SO.
4/11: @ San Francisco: 4.1 innings pitched, 4 hits, 6 runs, 6 earned, 1 HR, 2 BB, 6 SO.
As you can tell from the stat lines above, De La Rosa hasn’t had a problem striking people out with 16 strikeouts in 13 innings pitched. The problem is getting behind in the count and allowing the big hit such as a home run. He has given up a home run in all three games he has started this season. In his last outing against the Giants on 4/11, he was cruising early on but hit a bump in the road while giving up a grand slam to Madison Bumgarner.
Tonight he looks to get back on track to his 2013 self against a team in the San Diego Padres who rank 27th in the league in runs (40), 25th in batting average (.231), 29th in on-base percentage (.283), and 27th in slugging percentage (.349). First-pitch is scheduled for 10:10 PM ET, 8:10 PM MT as he will go up against Padres ace Andrew Cashner.