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Rockies to start Antonio Senzatela against Brewers in Game 1 of NLDS

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The second-year righty doesn’t throw hard but has been able to be successful since moving into the Colorado rotation

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at Colorado Rockies Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

The Rockies have had to scratch and claw their way to the NLDS, playing in the NL West tiebreaker game on Monday and the NL Wildcard game on Tuesday night. In the course of getting to Milwaukee, the Rockies used their two best starters — Kyle Freeland and German Marquez — leaving the middle of their rotation to start the series on Thursday.

Today the Rockies announced they’ll start second-year righty Antonio Senzatela in Game 1.

Senzatela started the season in the bullpen before moving into the rotation at the start of July. He had a 3.95 ERA as a starter despite striking out just 55 batters in 73 innings and walking 24. He’s seen even better results in September, allowing just 1 earned run in each of his past three starts, including limiting the Arizona Diamondbacks to just 3 hits over 7 innings on September 22nd.

Like most Colorado pitchers, Senzatela’s overall numbers are inflated a bit by pitching so frequently at Coors Field. Away from home, he’s limited opponents to a .220/.287/.341 overall line.

Senzatela has only made one start against the Brewers in his career — as mentioned by Tom Haudricourt, his MLB debut on April 6th of last season. That day he held the Brewers scoreless for 5 innings, allowing only 2 hits and striking out 6 to drop the Brewers to 1-3 to start last year.

That Brewers lineup, though, bears very little resemblance to the one that will take the field tomorrow afternoon. There was, obviously, no Lorenzo Cain or Christian Yelich or Mike Moustakas, Jonathan Villar went 0-for-4 with 2 strikeouts in the leadoff spot, Domingo Santana was hitting 5th, and the last four spots in the order were manned by Hernan Perez, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Jett Bandy and Chase Anderson.

Nieuwenhuis came on as a replacement for Keon Broxton, who started that game before Senzatela hit him in the head with a pitch in a moment that could have been much worse if Broxton wasn’t one of the first Brewers to wear the C-flap on his helmet.

The Brewers have not announced their Game 1 starter yet, but Wade Miley would be on normal rest. With two days’ rest, it would also likely be safe to assume that Josh Hader would be available in the event the Brewers held a late lead.