In a match up of two very similar starters, one was clearly comfortable in his environment, while the other looked out of his element. Unfortunately for us, Ubaldo Jimenez lived up to his stellar track record at home, Coors Field, and Matt Garza struggled with control of his fastball. Much like David Price last night, Garza relied too heavily on his fastball early on and barely went to his secondary stuff. Also like Price, he settled down, but it was already too late, and the Rays once again trailed 4-0.
Coming into this start, Garza was throwing an average of 69% fastballs and 14% sliders. Jimenez, who has very similar stuff, averages 70% fastballs and 15% sliders. Once again both relied heavily on fastballs today, but Garza went to the heater a few too many times. He was lifted for a pinch hitter after only 83 pitches; however 80% of them were fastballs. Jimenez was much truer to his averages throwing 67% fastballs and 15% sliders.
Garza's problem was fastball control. Despite throwing a higher strike percentage than Ubaldo, Garza was missing in the wrong spots. His counter part was missing low, while Garza was missing up. He only gave up five hits; however, three of them were home runs.
Ben Zobrist, who now qualifies for leaderboards, would snap a personal 0-8 streak with a two run single in the ninth, but the Rays would come up one run short once again. None of the Rays starters had especially great games in Coors and I'm sure none of them will miss playing there. I called for a 4-2 road trip, but at this point if they take two out of three in New York, I won't complain.