Rockies reliever Justin Miller was charged with a blown save and his third loss of the season after yielding four runs while recording just two outs in Wednesday's 8-6 loss to the Diamondbacks. The Rockies entered the bottom of the seventh inning clinging to a two-run lead, but after retiring the first two batters with relative ease, Miller imploded. He first gave up an inside-the-park homer by Phil Gosselin, then surrendered an infield single, a base hit, and a two-run double, in succession before getting the yank. The poor outing was quite uncharacteristic for Miller, who gave up just one run and two hits while striking out 18 batters over 12 innings in September. The Rockies will likely write off Thursday's blowup as an aberration and continue to deploy him in the late innings.
The Rockies have made a change in the back-end of their bullpen. Manager Walt Weiss has removed John Axford from the closer's role, after he record his fifth blown save of the season, and fourth in a row on Thursday. "I had a conversation with John a little earlier and I told him I was going to get him out of that ninth inning for a little bit and let him catch his breath," Weiss said Friday, per The Denver Post. Axford, who once saved 46 games in a season, got off to a blazing start in 2015. He had converted each of his first 12 save opportunities and gave up just one earned run over his first 20 appearances. But he has struggled lately, posting a whopping 12.15 ERA over his past nine outings. "I'm not so bullheaded as to say that I want to pitch in the ninth inning and that's how it has to be," Axford said. "I have pitched in other innings and I've had success in other innings. A lot of my success has come in the ninth, but that's also where some of the pain comes. "Stepping away definitely could be beneficial. It's worked before for me. It worked in 2012." Weiss indicated he will likely go with a closer-by-committee approach, with the likes of Rafael Betancourt, Tommy Kahnle and Justin Miller as potential ninth-inning options. "We have a few different options down there, so it will probably come down match-ups and who is available," Weiss said. "So there will be a few different guys throwing at the end."
Following the recent trade of Troy Tulowitzki to Toronto, the Rockies have shuffled their roster a bit on Tuesday. They have recalled infielder Christian Adames , right-hander Justin Miller and left-hander Aaron Laffey from Triple-A. Adames has not appeared in the big leagues yet this season, but he owns a .296/.342/.416 slash line with 16 doubles and seven home runs in 86 games with Alburquerque. Miller made eight relief appearances for the Rockies earlier this season, posting a 1.29 ERA over seven innings of work. Laffey, an eight-year veteran, pitched 2 1/3 innings in a relief outing earlier this year. He is 2-3 with a 4.78 ERA in 58 1/3 innings with the Isotopes.
The Rockies have reinstated reliever John Axford from the Family Medical Emergency list, the team announced on Saturday. Axford had been away from the team since Tuesday. Right-hander Justin Miller was optioned to Triple-A to clear a spot on the 25-man roster.
The Rockies recalled right-handed pitcher Justin Miller and left-handed pitcher Yohan Flande to the 25-man roster, according to MLB.com. These moves were made after placing pitcher Christian Bergman on the disabled list due to right shoulder fatigue and moving pitcher John Axford on the temporary inactive list.