SAN FRANCISCO -- Manager Jim Tracy could hardly contain himself when reflecting on the week-long Major League career of rookie southpaw Christian Friedrich. Less than 24 hours after seeing Friedrich notch 10 strikeouts and allow one run in seven strong innings of work, Tracy characterized the rookie's initial two big league starts as "dominant."
"The kid that pitched last night, he's making quite a loud statement for himself," Tracy said.
The Rockies skipper has been following Friedrich's career since 2009, Tracy's first year at the helm of the team and Friedrich's first full season with the organization. Tracy said Friedrich has made immense mental strides since the Rockies selected him with the No. 25 overall pick in 2008.
"I basically met two different guys," Tracy said. "There's this guy that looks like he has a chance to do some real special stuff here. Then there's the other guy that wasn't ready to do anything and didn't look like a No. 1 Draft choice. ... He's got it all now and he deserves a hell of a lot of credit."
Friedrich showed plenty of moxie Monday night, controlling the tempo of the game by working fast and mixing up his pitches well. The 24-year-old lefty led off the top of the seventh inning at the plate and Tracy said he didn't hesitate to keep the pitcher in the game. At that point, Friedrich had thrown just 83 pitches.
"You want him to be a finisher," Tracy said. "So you send him back out there and you know the game's hanging in the balance. ... Really encouraged by this kid."