DENVER (AP)—Ned Yost wasn’t about to manage the game Sunday by conventional methods.
Not after dropping the first two contests in the series and an off day looming.
“We were doing everything we could do to try to salvage the series,” the Brewers skipper said. “You shoot the moon. I can’t ever remember bringing my closer in in the eighth inning for a five-out save on the road. We did whatever we could do to win this ballgame.”
But Suppan (4-4) settled down and pitched 5 1-3 methodical innings, scattering four hits and allowing two runs—one earned—as he improved to 6-1 lifetime against Colorado.
“I was throwing with what I had,” said Suppan, who tied a season high with five walks. “Today was a little tougher battle for me. The bullpen came in and did a tremendous job.”
The relievers definitely did their part.
Villanueva went 1 2-3 innings, Brian Shouse got one out in the eighth and Torres finished off the win, throwing 1 2-3 innings to pick up his seventh save.
“I saw something white and purple coming toward me,” Torres said with a laugh. “I was like, ‘You know what? The guy’s going to (try to) score.”’
Instead, Hawpe was tagged out in a rundown. Pinch-hitter Jonathan Herrera then grounded out to second to end the threat.
“That was clutch pitching on both their parts,” Yost said.
Helton had a game he’d rather forget. He also flied out to right field with the bases loaded in the second and ended the game by lining out to third, halting the Rockies’ four-game winning streak.
“I left a small army out there on the bases today,” Helton said. “So I’m not happy about it. We had some momentum going and we couldn’t come up with some big hits.”
Jeff Francis became the first lefty in Rockies history to strike out 500 when he enticed Braun to swing at a pitch out of the zone in the second.
However, Francis (2-6) struggled with his control most of the afternoon, walking four in six innings.
“It was a struggle for him, but he held down the fort,” Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. “He gave up the early runs when his fastball command cost him. After that, he made pitches. He gave us an opportunity to win.”
Francis helped himself in the second by driving in a run with a single, his first RBI of the season. Chris Iannetta added an RBI single in the sixth.
“This was a frustrating day,” Helton said.
Rockies OF Matt Holliday could be back with the team as soon as Tuesday. Holliday has been out since May 25 with a strained left hamstring. … RHP Luis Vizcaino made his first relief appearance since going on the disabled list with a strained right shoulder on April 4. He pitched the eighth and gave up two walks. … Pinch-hitter Jeff Baker was lifted for a pinch runner after a single in the seventh. When asked if there was anything wrong, Hurdle said, “I’m not at liberty to say. All he was capable of doing was swing the bat,” Hurdle said.