San Diego (25-21) at Colorado (18-27)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Denver, CO
Temp: 68° F
  • Game info: 3:05 pm EDT Thu May 27, 2004
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Returning to Colorado has done wonders for Vinny Castilla’s career.

Having rediscovered his All-Star form from six years ago, Castilla will look to continue his stellar season when the Rockies complete their three-game series with the visiting San Diego Padres.

Castilla played with the Rockies from 1993-99, earning All-Star recognition in ’95 and ’98. From 2000-03, the 36-year-old third baseman played in Tampa Bay, Houston and Atlanta, batting a collective .246 and averaging 16 homers and 67 RBIs.

However, he chose to return to Colorado this past offseason, signing a $2.1 million, one-year deal. It has paid off as Castilla is batting .318 and is tied for the major league lead with 14 home runs.

Castilla homered twice and drove in four runs Wednesday, helping the Rockies end a six-game losing streak with a 13-6 victory.

“It’s working out great for me,” Castilla said after his 29th career multihomer game. “I love the fans here and when I signed here the front office, my teammates and the coaches welcomed me with open arms. It’s a great feeling when you feel wanted.”

Castilla has been superb at third base—one error in 116 chances—and has done a fine job batting cleanup in place of injured Preston Wilson and Larry Walker.

”(Signing Castilla) was probably the best free-agent acquisition of the offseason that we could have made,” said Rockies manager Clint Hurdle, whose team won for just the fourth time in 13 games.

The Padres have lost four of six, but still own a share of first place in the NL West with slumping Los Angeles.

Phil Nevin drove in three runs and Brian Giles added two RBIs for San Diego on Wednesday.

Nevin is batting .471 (8-for-17) with two doubles, a homer and seven RBIs over his last five games.

Giles has three homers and 10 RBIs over his last 10, hitting .368 (14-for-38) in that span.

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