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Rockies' Chacin toys with no-hitter, beats Giants

The SportsXchange

DENVER -- Pitchers Jhouys Chacin of the Colorado Rockies and Madison Bumgarner of the San Francisco Giants continued on their distinctly different paths Wednesday night.

Chacin flirted with a no-hitter and again won, while Bumgarner's hard-luck saga dragged on as the Rockies beat the Giants 5-4 in the rubber game of their series.

Chacin held the Giants hitless for 6 2/3 innings -- the longest a Rockies pitcher has carried a potential no-hitter into a game at Coors Field.

Brandon Crawford lined a single to center off Chacin to break up the no-hit bid. Chacin then got Roger Kieschnick to foul out to left fielder Charlie Culberson, which was the first and only out Chacin got on a fly ball.

"I knew he had a no-hitter going," said shortstop Crawford, whose missed catch was costly in the Rockies' four-run sixth. "It's just nice to get a hit, put something on the scoreboard."

Chacin said of his 1-2 pitch that Crawford hit for a single, "It was a fastball in. It was where I wanted but it wasn't high. He made a good swing on it."

Chacin pitched seven innings and gave up an unearned run in the fourth when shortstop Troy Tulowitzki made an error to put runners on first and second with no out, and Hunter Pence grounded into a double play.

Chacin tied his season high with nine strikeouts and threw a season-high 108 pitches as he improved his record to 13-7, extending his career high for victories and lowering his ERA to 3.08.

He has allowed three runs or less in 10 consecutive starts.

After he left, the Giants offense came to life scoring three runs in the eighth off Wilton Lopez and Josh Outman.

Hideo Nomo of the Los Angeles Dodgers threw the only no-hitter at Coors Field on Sept. 17, 1996. Since then, the longest a pitcher has carried a no-hitter into a game was 7 1/3 innings by Matt Cain of the Giants on Sept. 26, 2010.

The previous record for a Rockies pitcher to take a no-hitter into a game was 6 1/3 innings by John Thomson on May 2, 2002, against Pittsburgh.

In eight starts since the All-Star break, Bumgarner is 1-4 with a 2.63 ERA. The Giants have lost his past five starts and seven of his past eight.

Bumgarner pitched 5 1/3 innings, giving up a run-scoring double to Nolan Arenado in the second before being charged with three of the Rockies' four runs in the fateful sixth.

Bumgarner (11-9) had retired 12 of 13 batters since Arenado's double and seven in a row before DJ LeMahieu led off the sixth with a single. He ran on a 3-2 pitch to Tulowitzki that was ball four, although Giants manager Bruce Bochy said, "Looking at it, Bumgarner threw a great pitch to Tulowitzki. We throw them out, and he's out of the inning. We just gave them too many outs that inning."

LeMahieu stole third and scored when Wilin Rosario flared a single to center.

"I just caught some bad breaks in the sixth," Bumgarner said

Jean Machi relieved Bumgarner and got Arenado to hit a potential double-play bouncer back to him. But Crawford, moving toward second, reached back for Machi's throw and dropped it to load the bases.

"I'm going hard one way, the throw's the other way," Crawford said. "That's just a catch I need to make but didn't that time."

Machi threw three straight balls to Yorvit Torrealba before he drove his 3-1 pitch into the Giants bullpen on a bounce for a two-run, ground-rule double. Chacin grounded into a run-scoring fielder's choice to complete the scoring in the inning.

The Rockies like to limit their starters to around 100 pitches, but manager Walt Weiss said he would have kept Chacin had he continued his hitless stretch. That Chacin was even pitching was somewhat remarkable, since he had a fever of 100.6 degrees and a headache Tuesday night.

"I was really bad," Chacin said. "I told them if I felt the same today I couldn't pitch. I couldn't even do the chart yesterday. They gave me pills to make feel better. ... I always want to pitch so it would have to be really bad for me not to pitch."

Closer Rex Brothers, the fifth Rockies pitcher, retired the side in order in the ninth to pick up his 14th save.

NOTES: Rockies RHP Tyler Chatwood threw 71 pitches and allowed one run in 5 1/3 innings for Triple-A Colorado Springs on a rehab assignment Tuesday. Chatwood is expected to get the start on Sunday. ... Weiss said CF Dexter Fowler will be out "a few more days" with soreness on the outside of his left knee and "possibly" would have been a candidate for the disabled list if rosters weren't being expanded Sunday. ... Because they're off Thursday, the Giants are weighing the option of starting Yusmeiro Petit on regular rest Sunday at Arizona and skipping Barry Zito. ... OF Andres Torres had successful surgery to remove bone spurs from near his left Achilles tendon. The surgery was performed in Charlotte, N.C., by Carolina Panthers orthopedist Dr. Robert Anderson. Torres' recovery is estimated at six months.
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