After the Rockies and Cubs took part in a 6-hour, 27-minute game that lasted 16 innings on Tuesday, contingency plans were necessary.
For the Rockies to get through the eventual 4-3 loss, they were forced to use starter Tyler Matzek, who got two outs in the 16th on 16 pitches before taking the loss. That appearance caused Matzek's scheduled start, which was supposed to come on Thursday, to be pushed back.
"We'll bump Matzek, not a full turn, but we'll bump him back at least a day or two," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "We need to line that up and see how well the pieces fit together. But Matzek won't make his start tomorrow."
In the left-hander's place will be Pedro Hernandez. Hernandez will be recalled from Triple-A Colorado Springs for the series finale. While Hernandez hasn't pitched in the Majors this season, he has previously made appearances for the White Sox and Twins, posting a 7.57 ERA in 15 games (13 starts) in the Majors.
This season at Triple-A, Hernandez has a 6.18 ERA in 18 games (16 starts).
Opposing Hernandez for the Cubs will be right-hander Jake Arrieta, who has been a beacon of consistency of late. Arrieta tossed six innings, allowing two runs, in his last start against the Cardinals.
In that outing, Arrieta needed 24 pitches to escape the first inning while allowing the two runs, but he settled down from there.
"That performance is indicative of how much he's grown," Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. "If that had been a couple years ago, and he was struggling, he wouldn't be able to grind through and pitch six innings without his best command or stuff."
It was Arrieta's ninth straight quality start. He has a 1.77 ERA during that span.
Rockies: Rosario should be ready to return
After catching 282 pitches in Tuesday's 16-inning game, Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario was given Wednesday night off, although he did pinch-hit in the 10th inning of the Rockies' 6-4 victory.
Rosario grounded into a double play to end the top of the 16th on Tuesday, and noted the difficulty of facing a non-pitcher in Cubs catcher John Baker. The Rockies couldn't slow down their bats enough for Baker's 76-mph lobs.
"It's hard, after seeing hard pitches all night and then seeing something like that," Rosario said. "It's like playing baseball and then someone pitching a softball. I don't know."
Michael McKenry went 3-for-5 in Rosario's place Wednesday.
Cubs: Chicago bullpen taxed in 16-inning marathon
The Cubs bullpen tossed 12 shutout innings in relief of Edwin Jackson on Tuesday, allowing three hits and five walks with 14 strikeouts to help the Cubs to a 4-3 victory in the 16-inning game.
The Cubs has to quickly to turn around and play Wednesday. The bullpen pitched four more innings in relief.
"You've got guys that are going to have days off and guys that they'll going to steer clear of just to not give them any work," Cubs reliever James Russell said. "But I mean everybody has done what they need to do in preparing for getting a big workload like this. We knew after the trade deadline that the bullpen is going to probably take a big hit. Everybody is kind of ready for it mentally and physically."
• The Rockies have little experience against Arrieta as only two hitters -- Justin Morneau and McKenry -- have faced him. Combined, the two have gone 2-for-13 (.154) against Arrieta.
• Thursday's game will be the last of a 10-game homestand for the Cubs. Following the game, Chicago will embark on a seven-game road trip that will take the team to Los Angeles to face the Dodgers and Colorado for yet another series against the Rockies.
Alex Halsted is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.