Colorado shortstop Trevor Story clearly enjoys Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas, where the Rockies will continue their three-game series against the Texas Rangers on Tuesday.
The two-time All-Star, who will be a free agent at the end of the regular season, was born and raised in the Dallas area and still calls Texas home.
Story, 28, certainly looked comfortable on Monday, when he hit two homers and drove in three runs in Colorado’s 4-3 loss.
Playing in front of family and friends surely agrees with Story, who has three homers in four career contests at Globe Life Field. The Rockies are 17-49 on the road, but Story is always happy to visit his home state.
“It’s something me and my wife had circled on the calendar, and it’s here now,” he said. “It’s great to see our family and be home for this series.”
Texas has relied on its young pitching to win two straight following a four-game losing streak.
A.J. Alexy tossed five scoreless innings to win his major league debut on Monday, becoming the third Texas starting pitcher in six days to make his debut.
Texas will turn to a veteran on Tuesday with Jordan Lyles (6-11, 5.70 ERA) looking to end the month on a high note.
The 30-year-old right-hander pitched seven innings of one-run ball against the Boston Red Sox on Aug. 21, but he gave up eight runs in 3 2/3 innings Thursday during a 10-6 road loss to the Cleveland Indians.
Lyles has surrendered at least five runs in four of his five starts this month.
Story is 3-for-13 with a home run against Lyles, who pitched for Colorado from 2014-17. Lyles owns a 2-3 record and 5.48 ERA in 13 career games (seven starts) against his former club.
The Rockies will counter with Austin Gomber (9-8, 4.38 ERA), who is looking to bounce back after allowing five runs on seven hits over 4 2/3 innings in a 5-2 loss to the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday.
The 27-year-old left-hander is 1-3 with a 7.40 ERA in five outings this month after going 5-0 with a 2.18 ERA across six starts in June and July.
Gomber turned in an impressive performance against the Rangers on June 3, when he allowed three hits over six scoreless innings in an 11-6 win at Coors Field.
The Rockies will look for a better performance this time, perhaps sparked by C.J. Cron. He leads the majors in RBIs this month (33) and has reached base safely in 24 straight games.
Colorado’s Raimel Tapia (toe strain) was activated from 10-day injured list prior to the series opener and started in left field while batting seventh. He went 1-for-3 with a walk.
Tapia’s return could impact outfielder Connor Joe, who has been playing left and serving as the team’s leadoff hitter. Joe moved to first base on Monday while Cron served as the designated hitter.
The Rangers are 9-18 this month and hoping for a late surge from Rookie of the Year candidate and All-Star Adolis Garcia, who hit the team’s first grand slam of the season on Sunday.
“I’ve been working on hitting the ball in my zone and focusing on making sure that I don’t miss my pitch,” Garcia said. “That’s basically what I’ve been trying to do lately, and it seems to be working.”
Garcia struggled mightily for the first month after the All-Star break, but he is hitting .319 (15-for-47) with three homers in his past 11 games.
–Field Level Media