Iannatta’s grand slam helps Rockies beat Padres

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DENVER (AP)—It took a while for Ubaldo Jimenez to find his groove. Once he found it, he dominated the San Diego Padres.

Jimenez shook off an early two-run homer to pitch seven strong innings, Chris Iannetta hit his first career grand slam and the Colorado Rockies beat the Padres 10-3 on Tuesday night.

Four of the first seven batters in the game reached against Jimenez (11-12), but he didn’t falter. Early in the season, a start like that would have led to a quick night for him, but he settled down to win for the third time in his last four decisions.

“Probably in the beginning of the season if I had a start like that I wouldn’t have made an adjustment,” Jimenez said. “I just tried to relax and not rush my mechanics.”

He settled down after the second inning and was nearly unhittable in his last five innings. He gave up one hit from the third through the seventh and walked only one. He struck out nine, walked three and allowed three hits and retired the final seven batters he faced.

“It might have been a case where he wasn’t in a rhythm yet,” Iannetta said. “In the third, fourth inning he started feeling it and he got better as the night went on.”

Jimenez gave up a two-run homer to Adrian Gonzalez in the first—Gonzalez’s 34th—but the Rockies erased the deficit by scoring their 10 runs in the third through the sixth innings. Jeff Baker had three hits, including a three-run homer in the fifth, and three RBIs. Iannetta, Clint Barmes, Ryan Spilborghs and Dexter Fowler had two hits each.

“More impressive than anything was the way Ubaldo was able to put his foot down in the third inning and finish so well and so strong,” Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said.

The Padres, who had 18 hits in Monday’s game, had only four hits through the first eight innings before getting a pair of singles in the ninth.

The Rockies chased Padres starter Shawn Estes (2-3) in the fifth. After retiring the first two batters, Iannetta singled to right, Brad Hawpe walked and Baker hit his 10th home run of the season to left to make it 6-2.

Fowler and Jimenez followed with singles before Charlie Haeger came on and retired Barmes on a pop out to end the inning.

Barmes had given Colorado a 3-2 lead in the fourth with a double off the wall in left that scored Baker and Fowler.

“He wiggled out of some jams,” Padres manager Bud Black said. “He didn’t wiggle out of last one.”

Estes allowed six runs and 13 hits and struck out one. Estes, who was 15-8 for the Rockies in 2004, is 11-6 lifetime against Colorado.

“I gave up a bunch of hits, but all but two were off pretty good pitches,” Estes said. “The double by Barmes was a pitch that would have been in the dirt if he hadn’t hit it. Baker hit a changeup on a pitch that was up.”

The Rockies put the game away in the sixth. Haeger, a knuckleballer, walked the first three batters, and Iannetta followed with his 17th homer of the season that made it 10-2.

“I was ready for a fastball,” Iannetta said. “It’s tough when you’re expecting knuckleball and you try to adjust to a fastball. If you expect fastball it’s easier.”

The Rockies trailed 2-0 when Barmes scored on Garrett Atkins’ groundout in the third inning.


Padres RHP Cha Seung Baek (right shoulder inflammation) threw a side session Tuesday and will be re-evaluated Wednesday. … Rockies manager gave OF Matt Holliday the day off. Holliday has not missed a game since returning from the 15-day DL on June 10. … Padres SS Luis Rodriguez left the game in the third inning with a strained triceps in his right arm. … It was the second straight game the Rockies hit a grand slam. Troy Tulowitzki hit one in Monday’s loss to the Padres. It was the second time in franchise history they Rockies have hit grand slams in consecutive games.

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