Rockies right fielder Charlie Blackmon has been quite good this season, and he has been downright “Nazty” since missing 14 games with a right calf strain.
Entering Friday night’s game at Coors Field vs. the Padres, he was hitting .316 with 14 home runs and 41 RBIs. Since coming off the injured list, he has gone 11-for-25 (.440) with four homers, a triple, two doubles and nine RBIs.
The secret to the leadoff hitter’s success is a mature swing that enables him to hit to all fields with power. In Colorado’s 9-6 victory over San Diego Thursday night, for instance, Blackmon hit two home runs to center field, pulled a triple into the right-field corner and hit an opposite-field single to left.
But it’s not just Blackmon’s sweet swing that’s enabled him to hit safely in 33 of his last 36 games. It’s also the deep and powerful lineup behind him that’s a big part of the equation. And, most especially, it’s the presence of shortstop Trevor Story batting in the No. 2 hole that’s freed Blackmon up.
“I think Trevor has adjusted really well to being in that two hole, and he’s doing great,” Blackmon said. “I don’t think batting average scares guys as much as power does, and Trevor has a lot of power. So that helps me.
“I don’t walk much, and I get a lot of (strikes) to hit because everybody coming up behind me is scary. You have ‘Trev,’ then (David) Dahl and then Nolan (Arenado).”
Story, who hit a two-run homer Thursday night for his 16th longball of the season, is batting .278 with 46 RBIs.
“Inserting ‘Trev’ in the No. 2 spot gives us another guy with power early in the game, right off the get-go,” manager Bud Black said. “Plus, Trevor gives us a true element of speed at the top of the order.”