The Rockies will try to make it five wins in a row over the major league-worst Diamondbacks when the NL West rivals continue their three-game series at Coors Field.
The Rockies took the series opener 4-1 on Friday for their seventh win in 10 meetings this season. The victory also spoiled what may have been Johnson’s final appearance with Arizona.
With Saturday’s trade deadline looming, Johnson is still being shopped by the Diamondbacks, if they can broker a deal that will satisfy both themselves and the five-time Cy Young Award winner.
The Rockies weren’t the least bit concerned with Johnson’s situation as they scored four runs in the seventh inning Friday to pull out their seventh victory in 10 games overall.
“Everything just takes a life of it’s own,” Johnson said of the constant trade talk. “I feel like I’m in a fish bowl, which is really unfortunate because all I want to do is win and play and have fun. The only thing that is missing in `Tradegate’ is the paparazzi in my back yard or collecting garbage out of my garbage can.”
Rumors have been circulating for weeks about where Johnson will end up. The latest has him headed to either Anaheim, the New York Yankees or the Dodgers before Saturday’s non-waiver trade deadline.
There also have been stories that Johnson gave the Diamondbacks a short list of teams he’d go to, that he has vetoed potential deals and that he wanted a contract extension.
And it’s starting to wear him out.
“I’m kind of getting tired of everybody writing their own little story,” Johnson said. “I haven’t said anything since the All-Star break about this and it’s taking a life of its own. If this was a tin can filled with water there would be no water in the can, there are so many holes.”
Royce Clayton hit a solo homer off Johnson and Matt Holliday added two RBIs for the Rockies, who will send Shawn Estes to the mound Saturday. The left-hander has won four of his last five decisions, and is 5-1 in 10 starts at Coors Field this year.
The Rockies were also waiting by the phone late Friday as a deal that would send catcher Charles Johnson to the Los Angeles Dodgers was being held up while Johnson decides if he wants to waive his no-trade clause.
The Diamondbacks are 2-14 since the All-Star break.
Danny Bautista drove in the lone Arizona run Friday, but the right fielder’s status for Saturday is uncertain. He left the game in the eighth inning after aggravating a left hamstring strain. He had sat out Thursday’s contest against Houston because of soreness in his hamstring.
Bautista, batting a team-high .311, is hitting .389 (7-for-18) with a homer, two RBIs and four walks in his career against Estes.