Rotation in question for Rockies’ Marquis |

Rotation in question for Rockies’ Marquis

Troy E. Renck
The Denver Post
Jason Marquis layed down a bunt in the second inning that advanced baserunners but the Rockies were hitless through the first four innings. Stewart went to second while Torrealba went to third. The Rockies could not get them home. The Colorado Rockies hosted the San Diego Padres at Coors Field Wednesday night, September 23, 2009. Karl Gehring, The Denver Post

It is a cruel irony. Every team Jason Marquis has been on has reached the playoffs. Nine straight years. And yet he has pitched in the postseason in only four of those trips, victimized by second-half slides.

It’s the equivalent of buying the tux and renting the limo, then not going to the dance. Marquis fell deeper into a pattern he would like to forget, struggling in the Rockies’ 6-3 loss Wednesday night at frigid Coors Field.

“I wasn’t very good,” Marquis said.

An all-star, one of baseball’s most pleasant surprises for four months, Marquis has raised at least a morsel of doubt regarding his playoff rotation spot. Even after a disappointing loss, the Rockies remain four games ahead of the Braves and the Giants in the wild-card chase with 10 games remaining.

If, as expected, the Rockies reach the postseason, they must configure their rotation. As it stands, the only lock is Ubaldo Jimenez for the Oct. 7 opener, followed closely by Jorge De La Rosa, Marquis, Jason Hammel and Aaron Cook. Only four starters would be necessary, leaving Cook an X-factor to wedge himself back in with a strong showing Friday. A rotation without Marquis seems a longshot but can no longer be dismissed out of hand.

“He can make the adjustment,” manager Jim Tracy said. “He’s at his best when he dictates the aggressiveness of the hitters. That’s up to him.”

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