Rockies 6, Mets 2
DENVER (AP)—Right-hander Jason Hirsh was a scary sight on the mound and on the bases Monday night.
Hirsh threw six shutout innings but left Colorado’s 6-2 win over the New York Mets after spraining his right ankle at third base while trying to avoid a pick-off throw from the catcher.
“I’ve never been on third base, it’s kind of far away from the dugout,” Hirsh said. “I was taking my lead. I didn’t think I was really dancing around or doing anything kind of fancy out there. It’s just when (Tom) Glavine wound up, I took the lead and when he threw the pitch I got back.”
He beat the throw but his night was over.
“I remember hitting the bag and then I remember just falling over. I have to go back and look at the super slow-mo, but I heard it was fairly disgusting,” Hirsh said.
Hirsh said the team doctor told him he avoided a more serious injury because he already had that ankle taped because of tendinitis from the way he drags the leg in his follow-through.
A hobbled Hirsh said he expected to be OK in a couple of days but with the All-Star break coming up, the Rockies can afford to skip his next start as a precaution and give him more than a week’s rest.
Hirsh gave the Rockies more than they could have hoped for both on the mound and at the plate, where he collected the first two-hit game of his career and drove in two runs, the first RBIs of his career.
Coming off a 1-9 trip, their worst ever for that many games away from home, the Rockies celebrated their return to Coors Field by winning for the 10th time in their last 12 games at home.
Led by Matt Holliday’s three-run homer, they scored six times in the third off Glavine (7-6), who was denied his 298th career win, and the lanky right-hander Hirsh (4-7) capitalized on the early lead to throttle the Mets, who had won eight of 10.
Hirsh allowed three hits, walked one and struck out two in a strong bid to keep his spot in the rotation.
“That was excellent. That was nothing but top-shelf stuff,” Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. “That’s a good lineup. He got outs with his fastball. He was able to get it where he wanted it. That was his centerpiece. The breaking ball and changeup came into play at the right times. Great game plan. He controlled bat speed the entire time he was out there.”
Hirsh, who said his pitches were moving better than they had all year, added two singles, including a two-run chopper down the right-field line in the third, when Glavine labored through a 38-pitch inning in which he allowed six hits.
“The pitcher had one hit all year or something like that, finds a hole right down the first base line which obviously didn’t help any,” Mets manager Willie Randolph said.
While his first hit hurt the Mets, Hirsh’s second hit ultimately pained the Rockies.
“Before I went to that at-bat, Clint told me, ‘Either strike out or hit a home run. Don’t do anything stupid,”’ recounted Hirsh, who instead legged out an infield single off Glavine to start the sixth.
He was sacrificed to second, took third on a single and then he got hurt.
“I know the bullpen really needed a night off and I really felt like I had good enough stuff where I could have gone eight or nine innings,” Hirsh said. “And I think I was more upset that I wasn’t going to be able to stay in the game and continue pitching than I was about rolling the ankle.”
Glavine tied his season high with five walks to go with three strikeouts in six innings. He allowed nine hits.
Holliday, who received the most votes in the players’ All-Star balloting, followed singles by Willy Taveras and Jamey Carroll by sending an inside 3-2 fastball from Glavine 415 feet into the middle of the left-field seats for his 14th homer that gave Colorado a 3-0 lead.
“I guess the pitch to him stands out. It was the difference-maker,” Glavine said. “I’m still not convinced it was that bad a pitch.”
Brad Hawpe followed with an RBI single and, after Chris Iannetta was intentionally walked to load the bases, Hirsh chopped a two-run single down the right-field line just out of first baseman Carlos Delgado’s reach to make it 6-0. It was his second hit and first RBIs of his career.
LHP Oliver Perez will be eligible to return to the Mets for their first game after the All-Star break. He was placed on the 15-day DL Monday retroactive to June 27 because of persistent lower back stiffness. The Mets recalled LHP Jason Vargas, who will start against the Rockies on Tuesday night. … At 95 degrees, this was the second-hottest night game in Coors Field history, two degrees cooler than it was on July 1, 2002.
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