Weiss shakes things up, and it pays off during win against Red Sox
By Deesha Thosar
BOSTON -- With the Rockies in a funk of late at the plate, manager Walt Weiss made a significant switch to the lineup for Thursday's series finale at Fenway Park, moving shortstop Trevor Story from the second spot in the lineup to seventh for the first time in his career.
The rookie hadn't been able to generate much offense in this series -- striking out four times on Tuesday and sitting out on Wednesday -- but he ripped a two-run shot, his 13th home run, in the fifth, and Colorado went on to win the game, 8-2.
Weiss made it clear he wasn't moving Story down due to performance, but instead as a way to get more out of the team's offense as a whole.
"Trevor, he's handled everything," Weiss said. "He's a great kid and he's having a great year. I told him, this isn't punishment because you're not doing something you're supposed to be doing, this has nothing to do with that. Just me trying to stir some things up, create some things, especially at the top of the order."
The top half of the order delivered in the top of the fourth inning. With leadoff hitter Charlie Blackmon on base, Carlos Gonzalez knocked a two-run homer to right field to tie the game at 2. He added another base hit in the sixth. Ninety of Gonzalez' 182 career home runs have either tied the game or given his team the lead.
"I look for his rhythm and his timing with CarGo," Weiss said. "He's got some moving parts, but when he's on time and it flows, he's able to get his A-swing off, you know some damage is coming, and that's what I saw the last couple of days."
Weiss enjoyed having a designated hitter in his lineup -- a breath of fresh air that added depth to an offense that belted three two-run home runs on Thursday night. It was the team's first three-homer game this month.
Story didn't allow the change to affect his confidence level at the plate. He approached the seven-hole just as he would the No. 2 spot.
On his home run in the fifth, Story worked a nine-pitch at-bat, fouling off six consecutive pitches before taking two balls to get the count to 2-2. He then fired a rocket over the Green Monster to give the Rockies a 4-2 lead.
"The offense woke up tonight. This has been a tough road trip," Weiss said. "We've had back-to-back 10-day road trips along the West Coast, this one on the East Coast. This one involved three really good teams, so we knew it was going to be tough. But it was nice to salvage one here and head back home."
Dustin Garneau capped the Rockies' power show when he hit a two-run shot later in the fifth for his first home run of the season.
"Hit and run, changeup down and in, got the barrel to it," Garneau said. "It's pretty cool that it happened at Fenway, too."
• Left-hander Jorge De La Rosa was moved out of the rotation and into the bullpen on Wednesday. He will be available to pitch in relief either Friday or Saturday.
• The Rockies' weekend rotation is still not set in stone. Tyler Chatwood is scheduled to start for Colorado against the Giants at home on Friday, but Saturday's start will be given to either Eddie Butler or Chris Rusin.
Deesha Thosar is a reporter for MLB.com based in Boston. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.