Against the surprisingly good Colorado Rockies on Tuesday night, Hiroki Kuroda will be pitching in ballpark in which he is not exactly himself. Coors Field can turn a Cy Young Award winner into a BP pitcher, so it is not unusual for starters to struggle in Denver.
In his time with the Dodgers, Kuroda made four starts in Denver and had a 1-2 record with a 6.85 ERA. The Rockies had a .305 batting average in those games and got on base 35 percent of the time.
This season, Kuroda has been one of the best pitchers in baseball. He enters 4-1 with a 2.25 ERA. He continues to show an amazing ability to right himself mid-game, which is very rare.
The current Rockies don't have a lot of at-bats against Kuroda. Carlos Gonzalez is a .400 hitter in 15 at bats. Yorvit Torrealba has three hits in 10 at-bats. Everyone else is under .300, but it is a limited sample size.
The Rockies are 18-13, a half-game worse than the Yankees.
QUESTION: If Game 1 of the playoffs were tonight, would you want Kuroda or CC Sabathia on the mound?