Rich Aurilia’s prolonged slump might finally be ending.
Aurilia homered and drove in two runs Friday as the Giants took the series opener from their NL West rivals with a 6-2 win. The Giants are unbeaten after three games of a 12-game homestand.
With hits in three of his last four games following an 0-for-17 slump, Aurilia seems ready to emerge from a slide caused partly by irritation in his unusually dry eyes. Aurilia was hitting .397 (25-for-63) with two homers, seven RBIs and 17 runs in 17 games before the malaise.
His struggles have coincided with the Giants’ inconsistent month in which they lost their entire division lead before gaining it right back. San Francisco moved 3 1/2 games ahead of Los Angeles with Friday’s win.
“The only reason a big deal has been made of it is because of the (25-9) start we got off to,” Aurilia said. “We weren’t happy with May, but if we win tomorrow, it’s a winning month.”
After five straight victories at Coors Field, the Rockies had their first five-game winning streak since last June.
Colorado, which has the majors’ best home record, owns the worst road record, which dropped to 6-20 with its 16th loss in 18 games away from home.
STANDINGS: Rockies - 3rd place, 7 GB, NL West. Giants - 1st place, NL West.
ROCKIES PROBABLE STARTER: Jason Jennings (3-4, 5.64 ERA). Jennings is 0-1 with a 5.06 ERA over his last three starts and is coming off one of his shortest outings of the season. The 24-year-old right-hander allowed five hits and six runs over four innings Monday, walking four and striking out two, but didn’t figure into the decision of the Rockies’ 12-7 win over the Giants. Jennings is 4-2 with a 5.68 ERA in eight career starts against San Francisco.
GIANTS PROBABLE STARTER: Jesse Foppert (2-4, 4.83 ERA). Foppert is 0-2 with a 4.44 ERA over his last three starts, including Sunday’s 5-1 loss to the Rockies. The 22-year-old right-hander allowed three runs, two earned, and four hits over four innings, while walking three without notching a strikeout. The outing was Foppert’s lone career appearance against Colorado.
OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Rockies - Todd Helton, .345 avg. and 49 runs; Preston Wilson, 12 HRs, 48 RBIs and 5 SBs. Giants - Santiago, .329 avg. and 35 RBIs; Barry Bonds, 13 HRs and 37 runs; Durham, Marquis Grissom and Jose Cruz, 5 SBs.
SEASON SERIES: Rockies, 3-2.
STREAKS AND NOTES: Rockies - OF Wilson is Colorado’s leading hitter on the road, batting .289 (28-for-97) with six homers and 17 RBIs. … The Rockies have never finished a season leading the league in walks but are atop the majors with 251 this season. … RHP Nelson Cruz threw in the bullpen, but the team won’t decide whether to activate him from the disabled list until Saturday. Cruz has been out since last week with a sore arm. Giants - OF Bonds is three stolen bases shy of becoming the first major leaguer to hit 500 homers and steal 500 bases. … OF Grissom went 2-for-5 Friday as the leadoff hitter and is batting .457 (32-for-70) as the table setter in 15 of the Giants’ last 16 games. … The Giants are 16-6 against division rivals.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Rockies - 6-20 on the road; Giants - 15-10 at home.
INJURIES: Rockies - RHP Cruz (biceps), 15-day DL; LHP Denny Neagle (back), 15-day DL; RHP Denny Stark (side), 60-day DL; INF Pablo Ozuna (knee), 60-day DL; INF Juan Uribe (back), 60-day DL; OF Chris Richard (shoulder), 60-day DL. Giants - LHP Jason Christiansen (elbow), 15-day DL; RHP Robb Nen (shoulder), 15-day DL.