Jimenez tosses four-hitter to lead Rockies
DENVER (AP)—When Ubaldo Jimenez went to the mound in the ninth inning he wanted the shutout.
“I was starving for it,” he said.
After Matt Kemp sent his fastball 445 feet to center field, Jimenez had to settle for the first complete game of his career.
Jimenez (6-9) gave the Colorado bullpen some much-needed rest after Monday night’s 16-10 loss to the Dodgers in which the relievers threw 8 2-3 innings. Jimenez retired 13 straight at one point and 15 of the first 16 batters in winning for the fifth time in his last seven starts.
“He’s growing up right before your eyes,” Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said of the 24-year-old right-hander. “This was something that was another step forward for him.”
Jimenez didn’t allow a runner past first base until Nomar Garciaparra led off the eighth with a double to left, and he didn’t give up a run until Kemp led off the ninth with his 11th homer.
“It was one of the few mistakes he made tonight and so I took advantage of it,” Kemp said.
It was one of the few blemishes for Jimenez.
“I just wanted a complete game,” he said. “I wanted the shutout, but it happens.”
Jimenez, who struck out four and walked two, received a standing ovation from the crowd of 41,567 at Coors Field when he batted in the bottom of the eighth.
“It was a dream come true,” Jimenez said of the complete game. “Since I got to the big leagues last year, I dreamed about it.”
Clayton Kershaw (0-3), who was recalled from Double-A before the game, gave up five runs and 10 hits in three-plus innings.
“It’s not easy to pitch in this ballpark, but Jimenez had no problem tonight,” Dodgers manager Joe Torre said. “He just shut us down completely. We just threw too many balls in the middle of the plate.”
Hawpe got things started, putting Colorado ahead 1-0 with a one-out homer in the second.
Colorado extended its lead in the third. With one out, Baker and Matt Holliday singled, Garrett Atkins walked and Chris Iannetta smacked a two-run single to right. After Hawpe struck out and Troy Tulowitzki was intentionally walked, Stewart singled to right to make it 5-0.
“They were just hitting,” Kershaw said. “You’d almost rather it be a command problem than get hit like that.”
The Rockies chased Kershaw when they loaded the bases in the fourth with no outs on singles by Taveras and Baker and a walk to Holliday. Reliever Jason Johnson got out of the jam by getting Atkins to ground into a fielder’s choice at home and Iannetta into a double play.
Stewart’s fourth homer of the season made it 6-0 in the fifth. He finished with three hits.
The Rockies scored four runs in the eighth to make it 10-0.
“We’re all swinging the bat well,” Stewart said. “It seems like we’re seeing the ball well and everyone’s driving the ball.”
Dodgers RHP Jason Schmidt (shoulder surgery) had an injection on his right shoulder Tuesday to try to relieve some discomfort. Schmidt had surgery to remove scar tissue from the bursa sac, repair a frayed biceps tendon and repair a torn labrum on June 20, 2007. … Rockies LHP Jeff Francis (left shoulder inflammation) threw 50 pitches in a rehab assignment with Double-A Tulsa on Monday night. He is scheduled for another rehab start Saturday. … Tulowitzki’s single in the second gave him hits in six straight at-bats. He was 5-for-5 Monday night. … The Rockies have scored 10 or more runs in their last three games.