Rockies 9, Reds 5

Preview | Box Score | Recap

DENVER (AP)—At least for one game, the Colorado Rockies showed they can win without Larry Walker.

Jeromy Burnitz and Preston Wilson hit consecutive homers, and the Colorado Rockies used a five-run sixth inning to defeat the Cincinnati Reds 9-5 on Saturday night.

“The Walker thing doesn’t mean anything to me. It shouldn’t mean anything to anybody,” Burnitz said. “We just take it one day at a time and focus on your job regardless of who is around you.”

Burnitz moved from left field to right to replace Walker, who was traded to St. Louis on Friday night.

“That’s a funny way to put things,” said Burnitz of the idea he was an ample replacement. “I came here to play left field with Larry, so I wouldn’t really consider me his replacement.”

Burnitz got two hits in the game to end a 1-for-15 slide.

“Jeromy Burnitz is a good ballplayer,” manager Clint Hurdle said. “He will hold down his own, he has pretty much everywhere he has played. He will provide us with some offensive run support, he will score some runs and he will drive some in.”

Vinny Castilla added two RBIs, and Jorge Piedra drove in two runs with his first major league hit.

The Rockies recalled Piedra from Triple-A Colorado Springs before the game.

Rockies starter Aaron Cook left in the third inning because he felt lightheaded and dizzy. The gametime temperature was 78 degrees, but the air at Coors Field was unusually humid.

Adam Bernero relieved and allowed one run in three solid innings. Allan Simpson (1-1) escaped a jam in the sixth for the win. Scott Dohmann worked two innings, and Steve Reed pitched a scoreless ninth.

John Vander Wal hit a two-run homer, and Adam Dunn and Felipe Lopez each added a solo shot for the Reds. It was Dunn’s fourth homer in four games.

Paul Wilson (9-3) gave up seven runs and 12 hits, but is winless in five starts.

“If you look at his numbers in the morning, other than the two home run runs, he didn’t pitch ultimately that bad,” Cincinnati manager Dave Miley said. “Maybe a couple of plays that could have been made behind him weren’t.”

With the score tied at 3, the Rockies sent 10 hitters to the plate in the sixth and took an 8-3 lead. Todd Greene had an RBI single, and Piedra drove in two runs with a single to right on a nine-pitch at-bat.

“Being brought up was unexpected and I was still pumped up when I came up,” Piedra said. “I went to the plate aggressively and waited for a pitch I could hit.”

Piedra scored from third when Lopez booted Royce Clayton’s grounder to shortstop for an error, and Castilla drove in Aaron Miles with a sacrifice fly.

“They were hitting it where people weren’t,” Wilson said.

The Reds scored twice in the eighth on Lopez’s homer and Ryan Freel’s RBI double to make it 8-5.

Pinch-hitter Mark Sweeney homered in the bottom half.

The Reds got four straight hits in the second, but managed only two runs on Vander Wal’s homer over the scoreboard in right. Cook picked off Javier Valentin at second and fanned Wilson to end the inning.

Colorado countered with solo homers by Burnitz and Wilson in the bottom half.

The Rockies added a run on Castilla’s RBI groundout in the third. Dunn tied it at 3 with a solo homer to center with one out in the fifth.

Cincinnati put runners on second and third with no outs in the sixth, but didn’t score because Simpson retired the next three hitters.


Valentin had a career-high three hits. … Reds closer Danny Graves turned 31. … Colorado has 10 sets of back-to-back homers, seven involving Burnitz. … The Rockies have started a rookie in all 110 games. … Piedra was hitting .334 with 15 homers and 55 RBIs at Triple-A.

Related Articles