Rockies 7, Tigers 2
Shawn Chacon (9-3) got the win for the Rockies, who haven’t won a road series all season.
The Tigers have not won a home series this year and fell to 5-25 at Comerica Park.
“We sensed at the start of this road trip that there was just a different attitude,” said Rockies bench coach Jamie Quirk, who managed while Clint Hurdle attended his daughter’s high-school graduation in San Diego.
“Things didn’t go the way we wanted in Minnesota—we lost the middle game and got blown out yesterday—but nobody was upset. We sensed that in a good way.”
Chacon won his fourth in five starts, allowing two runs on eight hits and two walks in 7 1-3 innings. He struck out four after allowing a club-record 12 earned runs to Kansas City in his previous start.
“Against a team that is struggling, there is sometimes more pressure on you to come out and beat them,” Chacon said. “For us to win tonight was real good, especially coming off the game I had last week.”
Detroit led 2-1 until the Rockies had a sixth inning that looked like something straight out of Coors Field.
Todd Helton led off by slicing a double over the head of left fielder Dmitri Young and Preston Wilson followed with an infield single. After Larry Walker walked to load the bases, Stynes grounded a single past diving second baseman Warren Morris.
Sweeney followed with a long homer to right field on an 0-2 pitch from Nate Cornejo.
“I don’t hit many like that, so it is hard to talk about crushing the ball,” Sweeney said. “I had two strikes and was just trying to get a ball that I could get in the air to at least get one run in. I think he would have preferred to have the pitch a little more down.”
Cornejo, who ranks at the bottom of the majors in strikeouts per nine innings, was disgusted that he could not finish Sweeney off.
“They got a couple weak hits, but I can’t let a guy hit a homer on me 0-2,” said Cornejo, who is among the majors’ worst pitchers at striking out batters.
“When I get 0-2, I have to stop trying to make perfect pitches. I either end up giving up a hit or going to 2-2 and losing my advantage. I tried to throw him something inside and he hit it out,” he said.
Cornejo (3-4) gave up six runs on 10 hits and three walks in five-plus innings. Cornejo is 0-2 in his last six starts.
“Nate just doesn’t have his command right now,” said Tigers manager Alan Trammell. “He’s falling behind a lot more batters than he did when he was really pitching well.”
Colorado took a 1-0 lead in the second when Walker reached on a forceout and scored on Stynes’ double to right-center. Stynes finished 3-for-4.
“We’re just pressing right now,” said Trammell, who held a team meeting before the game. “We aren’t staying as focused as we need to be. Everyone wants to be the hero and get the big hit. That’s normal, but it means expanding the strike zone too much.”
The Tigers tied the game with a run in the fourth and took the lead with another in the fifth.
After Young was intentionally walked, Chacon walked Witt to load the basesbut Monroe struck out.
The Tigers ended three innings with double plays, and have now turned 14 inning-ending double plays in the last 11 games. … Hurdle is expected back in time for Saturday night’s game. … The Tigers have played every major league team, while the Rockies have not played Baltimore or the Chicago White Sox. … Rockies pitching coach Bob Apodaca was ejected in the bottom of the fifth inning by first-base umpire Tim Timmons for yelling from the dugout about a close play at first. … Stynes has a career .526 average (10-for-19) atComerica Park.