SAN DIEGO – In his last two outings, Germán Márquez didn’t have the all-star outings that earned him a place in the Midsummer Classics.
Márquez gave up eight runs over 12 1/3 innings in his first two starts after the All-Star break. But on the same hill on which the right-hander ended his outstanding first half of the season, he gave himself a boost and helped himself to the plate in Saturday’s 5-3 win against the Padres at Petco Park.
Opposite the all-star hurler Yu Darvish, Márquez sent a slider of 418 feet into midfield in the fifth inning, marking his second home run of his career and the first home run of a Rockies pitcher since 2018 (which also came from Márquez). It also made Marquez the ninth Rockies pitcher in franchise history, making multiple home runs over the course of their respective careers.
“Darvish is a good thrower,” said Marquez in Spanish. “One of the best. To beat a homer against him is incredible to me. I still can’t believe it.”
On the hill, Marquez limited the Padres to just two runs over six innings, despite walking four bats. The only runs Marquez gave up came through a two-run homer from Jake Cronenworth in the third inning.
After Cronenworth’s Homer, Marquez retired seven of the next eight batter, collecting four of his seven strikeouts in that span.
In his final inning, before getting a pinch hit for the top of the seventh, he had to work his way out of a traffic jam as he led Trent Grisham on four pitches to load the bases. After a visit from Rockies manager Bud Black, Marquez Jurickson met Profar and looked at three straight sliders to keep the bases loaded and keep the Rockies in the lead.
“I felt really good,” said Marquez. “Working with men on the grassroots is not easy. … Getting out of this inning was great. It was big for me and it was big for the whole team. “
Black, noting he was using the hill visit to talk about strategy and mechanics, and reminding Marquez to exhale, was pleased with the way Marquez ended his excursion.
In the strongest season to date for the 26-year-old, Márquez’s ability to leave the bases charged showed Black a step in the right direction.
“That says a lot, right,” Black said of Marquez’s last inning of work. “I think we’ve seen that before our eyes over the past few years. … I think from a coaching point of view, based on what we know about Germán, his talent, his experience now that we trust him, is that going to happen all the time? No. But we think it will happen most of the time. “
Despite having a good outing, Marquez was having trouble finding command. He threw 102 pitches and only 61 went for strikes. His four hikes were the second most he has done in one outing this season. Márquez also threw only 12 of his 25 clubs from the first pitch.
Black said one of the improvements he would like to see from Marquez is staying one step ahead of the thugs at the start of the count.
“I thought he threw the ball well, I thought it was pretty crisp overall,” said Black. “If you can take one thing apart, I didn’t really like the hit rate on the first field. It seemed like he was way behind 1 and 0 tonight. The early punches really weren’t that common, but I thought he had a good break ball. I thought he threw some good fastballs too. “