News Forum Blogs Roster Players Schedule Depth chart Stats Videos Photos

Colorado Rockies News

News » Cubs put Rockies on ice In a steady freezing drizzle, Lilly dominates Colorado, which never warmed up to Chicago.

Cubs put Rockies on ice In a steady freezing drizzle, Lilly dominates Colorado, which never warmed up to Chicago.

Cubs put Rockies on ice In a steady freezing drizzle, Lilly dominates Colorado, which never warmed up to Chicago.
CHICAGO - Briefly, there were signs of life. The Rockies pulled on their ski caps, pulled up their long johns and headed to the batting cage to stretch Monday. These were not ideal conditions for limbering up - imagine clowns piling into a Volkswagen - but the Rockies were determined to make the best of it.

Then they came back to the clubhouse.

"It's miserable out there," first baseman Todd Helton told owner Dick Monfort.

It only got worse over the next three hours. The Rockies served as nothing more than human otter pops for Ted Lilly and the Cubs in a one-hit, 4-0 blanking at the Ice Box formerly known as Wrigley Field.

"That's the coldest I have been since playing in Colorado Springs," Garrett Atkins said. "When I broke my bat the first time up, I couldn't feel my right hand the rest of the at-bat."

The Cubs raised the curtain on their home schedule, and all the Rockies could do was cringe and bear it. Their best starter, Ubaldo Jimenez, never thawed out, his fingers unable to grip the ball as he walked six and hit a batter, needing 104 pitches to record 11 outs. Their manger, Clint Hurdle, overheated, disputing a questionable balk call, leading to his 22nd career ejection.

"But you can't make excuses," said Brad Hawpe, who left the game in the fifth inning with tightness in his left hamstring. "They had to play in the same conditions."

The chilling thought is this could be the beginning of a disturbing slide. The Rockies have lost three consecutive games and have seven remaining on this road trip. Treading water, or icebergs, as it were, remains critical.

About all the Rockies did Monday was survive the elements. They offered little resistance to Lilly. He was masterful, playing to the crowd, to the weather and the incredibly expanding strike zone. When the Rockies weren't blowing on their hands to ease the 31-degree chill, the left-hander had them chasing their tails.

"It was fun out there," Lilly said.

The Rockies avoided the indignity of a no-hitter when Atkins hit a sharp groundball to left field in the seventh inning.

"It could have been snowing, sleeting or on top of Mount Everest and Ted's a gamer," Cubs catcher Koyie Hill said.

Lilly's also smart, wisely finding a rhythm with plate umpire Andy Fletcher. Lilly began to get the strike at the knees as the game progressed, leaving Rockies players grumbling.

"He pitched to the glove," outfielder Ryan Spilborghs said, "no matter where it was."

Jimenez needed a compass to find the plate, his numb fingertips useless in throwing his fastball or his splitter. He tried everything to get warm - using the heater in the dugout as opposed to the one that frosted over in the bullpen. Nothing helped.

"I was freezing," Jimenez said.

With no feel at the point of release, he exited in the fourth. Hurdle followed shortly after.

Anger, potential for injury and ineffectiveness - that summed up a day more suited for polar bears. And apparently Cubs.

Troy E. Renck: 303-954-1301 or

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: April 15, 2009

Colorado Rockies Photos
All the latest Colorado Rockies Photos Store photographs. Major League Baseball MLB.
The most recent photo
Add to Google
Add to My Yahoo!
Subscribe in NewsGator Online
Add to Windows Live

Copyright ©, Inc. All rights reserved 2008.