Arizona (41-45) at Colorado (44-41)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Denver, CO
Temp: 52° F
  • Game info: 8:05 pm EDT Sat Jul 8, 2006
  • TV: KTVK, FSRM
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Arizona Diamondbacks ace Brandon Webb hopes to further show he’s back on track as he takes the mound at Coors Field on Saturday to face the Colorado Rockies.

The All-Star right-hander was a big reason Arizona was atop the NL West well into June. However, as Webb (9-3, 2.72 ERA) started to struggle, so did the Diamondbacks.

After going 8-0 with a 2.01 ERA in his first 12 starts, he went 0-3 with a 5.08 ERA in his next five. The first start during that stretch coincided with what turned into an awful stretch of games for the Diamondbacks, who lost 20 of 23 and fell into last place.

Webb finally put together a dominant performance on Sunday, striking out seven as he threw a four-hitter to win 3-1 at Oakland.

“If I get five, six, seven runs sometimes, I’m supposed to win those ballgames,” Webb said. “I’m trying to be the leader of the pitching staff and to go out there and lose for a month does wear on you.”

In his previous outing, Webb allowed a season-high seven runs in seven innings against Seattle.

His only start against Colorado this season came on opening day and he pitched seven strong innings in Arizona’s 3-2, 11-inning loss at Coors Field.

Webb, who is second in the majors in ERA, is 6-3 with a 3.24 ERA in 12 starts against the Rockies.

Arizona did not get a solid starting performance on Friday in the series opener, but pulled out a 4-3 victory. Miguel Batista allowed three runs and five hits in four innings before being lifted after a nearly three-hour rain delay, but the bullpen held Colorado to three hits and one walk in five scoreless innings.

“I don’t make any excuses,” Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. “They were a little better than us tonight and we couldn’t score after the second.”

While the Diamondbacks are looking to win a series for just the second time in their last 10, the Rockies (44-41) have won five straight series to match a club record.

Left-hander Jason Jennings, who opposed Webb in April and also pitched seven innings of one-run ball, will start for Colorado.

Jennings (6-6, 3.85) is on a personal three-game winning streak, his longest since 2004, and has a 1.24 ERA over his last four outings. He’s pitched at least seven innings in all four, and is unbeaten since June 4.

Jennings is winless in four straight outings against the Diamondbacks, dating back to July 30, 2004. He’s 4-5 with a 4.74 ERA in 14 career starts against them.

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Starting Pitchers

B. Webb Tex vs. J. Jennings Oak
16-8 Record 9-13
3.10 ERA 3.78
178 K 142
50 BB 85
1.13 WHIP 1.37