Colorado (51-44) at Philadelphia (49-46)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Philadelphia, PA
Temp: 73° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Fri Jul 23, 2010
  • TV: FSRM, CSN
Preview | Box Score | Recap

When Philadelphia and Colorado met at Coors Field in May, their two-game series was overshadowed by an alleged sign-stealing incident. This weekend their collective focus should simply be to win games.

Roy Halladay(notes) looks to bounce back from a rough start and help the Phillies to a second straight win as they open a four-game series with the visiting Rockies on Friday night.

Colorado manager Jim Tracy insists he has no hard feelings for Philadelphia (49-46) or manager Charlie Manuel following a brief war of words after their last series. The Phillies received a warning from Major League Baseball after bullpen coach Mick Billmeyer was caught using binoculars while Rockies catcher Miguel Olivo(notes) was giving signs.

“That situation has already been rehashed, and as far as I’m concerned, it’s over with,” Tracy told the Rockies’ official website. “He takes care of his flock and I take care of mine. It’s that simple.”

What has not been simple for either team lately is winning.

Philadelphia improved to 2-6 since the All-Star break after snapping a four-game skid with a 2-0, 11-inning victory at St. Louis on Thursday. The two-time reigning NL champions are seven games behind first-place Atlanta in the East.

“We’re a good team, we’re not going to give up, we’re going to keep playing,” said Placido Polanco(notes), who homered in the finale.

Colorado (51-44), losers of six of seven at Philadelphia, is 2-5 on an 11-game trip after dropping three of four at Florida, including its last two.

“We’ve got to find a way to win a couple more games on this trip,” Tracy said. “Hopefully, we can win four more.”

The Rockies could have a hard time doing that with Halladay (10-8, 2.40 ERA) on the mound for the opener, although the Philadelphia ace is coming off an uncharacteristically rough outing. After yielding one run in 18 innings over his previous two starts, Halladay gave up six in six innings of an 11-6 loss to the Cubs on Sunday.

“You don’t want to beat yourself with big runs,” Halladay said. “You don’t get away with mistakes. It’s going to cost you.”

The right-hander allowed three runs in 6 1-3 innings at Colorado on May 12, when the Phillies lost 4-3 in 10 innings. His only other start against the Rockies was a two-hit shutout for Toronto in 2002.

The two runs in Thursday’s win are becoming the norm for Philadelphia, which has totaled four runs in its last three games and is averaging 2.9 since the All-Star break.

“We have to do something about it,” Manuel said. “It’s hard to explain.”

Shortstop Jimmy Rollins(notes) is 4 for 32 in his last eight games. All-Star Ryan Howard(notes), however, had three hits Thursday and is batting .406 during the same span.

Howard and Rollins are a combined 19 for 49 against Colorado’s Aaron Cook(notes) (4-5, 4.56), who looks to build on the best outing of his season. The right-hander allowed six hits in seven innings of a 1-0 win at Cincinnati on Sunday.

Cook is 1-5 with a 5.85 ERA in nine starts versus the Phillies. He allowed three runs in six innings against Halladay in the May victory.

Ian Stewart(notes) hit his 13th homer in Colorado’s 3-2 loss at Florida on Thursday. The Rockies totaled four runs and 12 hits while losing the final two games of the set.

Jason Giambi(notes), who had two hits and an RBI on Thursday, is a lifetime .314 hitter with four home runs against Halladay.

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Starting Pitchers

A. Cook Col vs. R. Halladay Tor
6-8 Record 21-10
5.08 ERA 2.44
62 K 219
52 BB 30
1.56 WHIP 1.04

Scoreboard

Friday, Jul 23