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Skaggs sparkles in Diamondbacks' 5-0 win

The SportsXchange

PHOENIX --Tyler Skaggs' commanding fastball led to Arizona's overall dominance of National League West rival Colorado on Friday night.

Skaggs gave up three singles and a walk in eight innings in the Diamondbacks' 5-0 victory over the Rockies on the same day that he was promoted from Triple-A Reno to fill a hole in the rotation.

"Throwing fastballs for strikes inside and getting ahead in the count. Strike one is the biggest pitch in baseball," said Skaggs, making his fourth start for the Diamondbacks this season.

"I wouldn't say the approach is different. I just felt more comfortable out there. All my stuff was working."

Skaggs (2-1) struck out five and did not permit a runner to reach second base. He was building off a 13-strikeout game in his last start at Reno.

"A very dominant performance," Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said.

Paul Goldschmidt and Aaron Hill had two hits and drove in two runs apiece for Arizona. A.J. Pollock had two hits and scored three times.

Goldschmidt singled in Pollock in the third inning and doubled Pollock home in the sixth for a 2-0 lead against Colorado left-hander Jorge De La Rosa (8-4).

Goldschmidt increased his National League-leading RBI total to 71, three more than St. Louis' Allen Craig, as the Diamondbacks (45-41) won their third straight game to increase the division lead to 3 1/2 games.

Michael Cuddyer had an infield single in the seventh and has hit safely in 30 of the last 31 games for Colorado (42-45), which has lost four of five.

"He reminded me of Barry Zito when he was with Oakland," Cuddyer said of Skaggs. "He had a two-seamer (fastball) away and then in the middle innings he started throwing that curveball, which is a plus, plus curveball. It was very reminiscent of Zito."

Skaggs has thrown 14 scoreless innings in his two starts at Chase Field this season. He retired 12 straight after giving up a Corey Dickerson single with one out in the first inning. He was filling a hole in the rotation left when Trevor Cahill was placed on the disabled list with a right hip contusion on July 1.

Skaggs' victory was the second for a starter in Arizona's last 27 games, since Wade Miley beat St. Louis 10-3 on June 5 in Busch Stadium.

"He commanded the zone great with all his pitches," Gibson said "He threw all of his pitches at any time and he threw to both sides of the plate. His changeup was electric. He got behind early counts and threw a lot of changeups. His breaking ball was a good strikeout pitch for him."

Colorado did not get a runner to second base. One runner was thrown out stealing and another was erased on a double play grounder.

"We never really mounted anything offensively," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "We ran a young lineup out there tonight. Those guys are all capable of putting together good at-bats and scoring runs. We just got down tonight."

NOTES: Diamondbacks IF/OF Willie Bloomquist said after the game that a CT scan revealed two broken bones on the top of his left hand. He expects to be out for six to eight weeks. ... The Diamondbacks wore special jerseys with block "Arizona" on the front with a "19" patch over their hearts as a tribute to the 19 Granite Mountain Hot Shots firefighters who lost their lives in the Yarnell Hill wildfire outside of Prescott, Ariz., on June 30. Both teams wore "Prescott Fire Dept." hats during batting practice and for the national anthem. Prescott is about 100 miles north northwest of Phoenix. ... In addition to Skaggs, the Diamondbacks also recalled RHP Charles Brewer to add bullpen depth after using nine pitchers in a 5-4, 15-inning victory over the New York Mets on Sunday. The D-backs used 24 pitchers in the four-game series. RHP Chaz Roe, who picked up his first major league victory on Sunday, and OF Tony Campana were optioned to Triple-A Reno. Both Arizona and Colorado have 13 pitchers and 12 position players for the series.
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