Boston (37-27) at Colorado (23-41)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Denver, CO
Temp: 82° F
  • Game info: 3:05 pm EDT Thu Jun 17, 2004
  • TV: NESN, KTVD
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Derek Lowe finally appears to be getting his season on track.

The right-hander will look to put together three consecutive solid outings for the first time this year when the Boston Red Sox close out their three-game interleague series with the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.

Lowe, a converted reliever who won a combined 37 games as a starter the previous two seasons for Boston, struggled mightily during the first two months of this season. After opening the year 3-1, Lowe managed just one victory in six May outings, yielding at least five runs in all but one of those starts.

But he has settled down of late, earning a 5-3 win at Kansas City on June 6, and following that up with his best performance of the season Friday against Los Angeles. Lowe did not receive a decision in Boston’s 2-1 victory, but scattered just five hits over a season high-tying seven scoreless innings, striking out four and walking four.

“I was so proud of Derek,” Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. “He was so good and we need him to be good. You could see the whole dugout get a lift from the way he threw the ball.”

The Red Sox have dropped the first two games to the Rockies, including Wednesday’s 7-6 setback. Jason Varitek homered and sparked a two-run rally in the ninth before Colorado’s Shawn Chacon shut the door on Boston’s bid for a comeback.

Vinny Castilla drove in three runs and Jason Jennings worked out of two bases-loaded jams for his fourth win in five starts as the Rockies made it two in a row following an eight-game losing streak.

Colorado won consecutive home games for just the third time this year and earned its first home series victory since May 1-2 against Atlanta.

Boston’s Trot Nixon didn’t waste any time finding his stroke after coming off the disabled list Wednesday. He lined a solo homer to right in the fourth inning, and finished 1-for-4 after missing Boston’s first 63 games with back and leg injuries.

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Starting Pitchers

D. Lowe Tex vs. A. Cook Col
14-12 Record 6-4
5.42 ERA 4.28
105 K 40
71 BB 39
1.61 WHIP 1.56