Black­mon’s big night

ROCK­IES 16, PADRES 0 Colorado’s cen­ter fielder sets NL records, driv­ing in four runs in a blowout vic­tory.

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Nick Groke

Coors Field fans du­ti­fully filled in the lyrics to Char­lie Black­mon’s walk-up song Satur­day night, singing the stanza that ends with “to-ni­i­i­ight” even after Colorado’s cen­ter fielder pulled a switcheroo. In honor of Dia de Los Rock­ies night, Black­mon played the Es­pañol cover in­stead of the Bri­tish pub rock ver­sion.

The Rock­ies are in a groove, me­thod­i­cally march­ing to­ward Oc­to­ber with ev­ery­thing re­hearsed. Black­mon twice fol­lowed the crowd cues with game-al­ter­ing hits Satur­day in the Rock­ies’ 16-0 blowout of the

Padres in front of a sell­out crowd of 48,247.

It was the Rock­ies’ largest shutout vic­tory in their his­tory, sur­pass­ing a 13-0 vic­tory ex­actly 10 years ago to the day that was the first of 21 wins in their fi­nal 22 games be­fore the World Se­ries.

“It seems like we’re kind of pulling it to­gether,” said Black­mon, who bolted into the Na­tional League record books. “I wouldn’t put too much into (the score). A 1-0 win would have been just as good.”

Black­mon’s dou­ble in the sec­ond keyed a five-run, nine-bat­ter in­ning against ex-rox right-han­der Jor­dan Lyles; and his three-run homer to right field in the sixth led to a benches-clear­ing rhubarb.

Colorado’s cen­ter fielder fin­ished with four runs bat­ted in, set­ting an NL record with 92 RBIS this sea­son as a lead­off hit­ter, pass­ing Craig Big­gio’s mark of 88 in 1998.

He has set­tled atop the Rock­ies or­der as their best, most valu­able hit­ter. Black­mon also col­lected his 81st and 82nd ex­tra-base hits from the lead­off spot, an­other NL record, pass­ing Jimmy Rollins’ mark with the Phillies in 2007.

And Colorado (82-67) moved farther ahead of the near­est NL com­peti­tors for the sec­ond wild-card spot, 3½ games ahead of the Brew­ers and 4½ in front of the Car­di­nals. Both those teams lost Satur­day.

Left-han­der Tyler An­der­son re­turned to the Rock­ies’ ro­ta­tion for his first start since June 25 — and in com­mand­ing fash­ion. He whipped through five no-hit in­nings and two more outs be­fore Manuel Mar­got weakly drib­bled an in­field hit in front of the plate. An­der­son tossed six shutout in­nings, al­low­ing two hits.

Car­los Gon­za­lez smacked a moon­shot two-run homer to the sec­ond deck in right field in the fifth and hit two other sin­gles. Pat Valaika hit a pinch-hit grand slam to left field in the sev­enth. Jonathan Lu­croy lined three sin­gles and scored twice. And Nolan Are­nado’s sin­gle in the sec­ond gave him 125 RBIS, mak­ing him the first Rock­ies player with three con­sec­u­tive sea­sons with 125 or more RBIS. He is base­ball’s first third base­man to do it.

“We had a lot of guys with good swings,” Rock­ies man­ager Bud Black said. “And we had three pitch­ers throw ex­tremely well to throw a three-hit shutout. That’s what stood out for me. The pitch­ing.”

But the night be­longed to Black­mon.

After Black­mon home­red off Padres re­liever Miguel Diaz in the sixth to ex­tend Colorado’s lead to 10-0, Diaz pegged DJ Lemahieu in the arm with his next pitch, prompt­ing Lemahieu to protest and the benches to clear. They never swung fists. But home-plate ump Gerry Davis ejected Diaz.

Dustin Brad­ford, Getty Im­ages

The Rock­ies’ Char­lie Black­mon high-fives team­mate DJ Lemahieu after hit­ting a three-run home run in the sixth in­ning, giv­ing Colorado a 10-0 lead en route to a 16-0 blowout of the Padres on Satur­day night at Coors Field.

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