Diamondbacks defeat Rockies 6-4

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PHOENIX (AP)—Brandon Webb wanted one last victory to fortify his NL Cy Young resume.

He’ll have to settle for 22, tied for the most in the majors.

Stephen Drew’s two-run single in the eighth inning led the Arizona Diamondbacks to a 6-4 victory over Colorado on Saturday night, but it came too late to make a winner of Webb.

“I feel good where I’m at,” said Webb, who finished 22-7. “I feel pretty confident.”

Webb’s candidacy seemed shaky when he lost critical back-to-back starts against the Los Angeles Dodgers, who beat out the Diamondbacks for the NL West title. But he rallied to win his next three starts, heading into Saturday night.

The Diamondbacks believe that Webb deserves his second Cy Young—and the sixth in franchise history. The other four belong to Randy Johnson, who will start on Sunday.

“I’m glad he got a no-decision instead of a loss out of it, so for me he’s still in the same position (as) before,” Arizona manager Bob Melvin said of Webb, who won the 2006 NL Cy Young with 16 victories.

Webb’s main competition may be San Francisco’s Tim Lincecum, who faces the Dodgers on Sunday. Lincecum is 17-5 and leads the league in strikeouts, and his 2.66 ERA is .13 points higher than New York’s Johan Santana, who pitched a shutout on Saturday.

Webb allowed four runs and six hits in seven innings. He walked two, hit two and struck out seven.

His ERA rose a fraction, to 3.30 from 3.24.

Webb could not hold a two-run lead that he gave himself with a two-run double in the fourth.

With the score tied at 1-1, Webb laced a two-out double into the left field corner off Colorado starter Glendon Rusch.

“He went out and crushed a fastball, first pitch,” Rusch said. “That happens sometimes. He’s always swung the bat well.”

The numbers don’t back that up. Webb, a career .111 hitter, chuckled at the suggestion that he might also be a candidate for the Silver Slugger Award as the best hitter at his position.

“(Against) left-handers, I should probably be batting seventh or so,” Webb said.

Webb gave up a first-inning run on a two-out double by Ryan Spilborghs and a triple by Brad Hawpe. Webb recovered to retire the next 11 in a row before inexplicably losing his command with one out in the fifth.

He hit the No. 7 hitter, Chris Iannetta, then plunked the eighth hitter, Clint Barmes.

“I don’t hit a lot of guys, but two in a row there, that’s a little disappointing how that unfolded that inning,” said Webb, who hit 10 men in his first 224 innings.

Pinch-hitter Adam Melhuse doubled to cut Arizona’s lead to 3-2, and Seth Smith followed with a single to tie it.

One out later, Spilborghs singled and Webb found himself in a 4-3 hole. That’s where it stood when Webb left for a pinch-hitter in the seventh.

The Diamondbacks tied it at 4-4 on Mark Reynolds’ RBI single in the eighth. With two outs, Drew singled sharply to right field with the bases loaded to put Arizona ahead 6-4.

Drew’s big hit came off Manuel Corpas (3-4). For much of the stretch run, the Diamondbacks failed to produce with runners in scoring position, which is among the reasons they’ll be watching the playoffs at home next month.

“It seems like our at-bats late in the game now all of a sudden are good,” Melvin said.

Brandon Lyon (3-5) pitched a scoreless eighth, and Chad Qualls got three outs in the ninth for his ninth save in 17 chances.

Notes

Arizona 1B Adam Dunn led off the fourth inning with his 40th homer, a 454-shot to center field. … Dunn has hit at least 40 homers in five straight seasons. … Arizona LHP Randy Johnson starts the season finale on Sunday. Johnson, who is 10-10 with a 4.11 ERA, will go for his 295th career victory. … Rusch lasted four innings, his shortest outing of the season. He allowed three runs and four hits, walking one and striking out five.

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