Diamondbacks 8, Rockies 5

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DENVER (AP)—Shawn Green and Craig Counsell had a tentative game of Scrabble set up for the plane ride home. Starting pitcher Juan Cruz walked around the clubhouse with shaving cream still on his just-shaven, but smiling face.

The Arizona Diamondbacks had reason to be in a playful mood after the team put the finishing touches on a three-game sweep of the Colorado Rockies with an 8-5 win on Sunday.

After going 8-20 in June—the month that pitcher Jason Grimsley’s house was raided by federal agents as part of an investigation into performance-enhancing drugs—the Diamondbacks are now a respectable 5-3 in July.

“We’re showing signs we can be a good team,” Counsell said.

Arizona manager Bob Melvin liked what he saw from his team against the Rockies. Down 5-2 in the seventh, the Diamondbacks (43-45) rallied for the win.

“Great at-bats across the board,” Melvin said.

While the mood was festive in the Arizona clubhouse, it wasn’t quite the same for the Rockies.

“It was a rough weekend,” manager Clint Hurdle said. “This is not the way we wanted things to end up in the first half. We have to be better than this.”

Despite being swept, it was a nice first half for Colorado (44-43). It’s just the fourth time in franchise history the Rockies have entered the break with a record above .500.

Even Hurdle could see the positives through the negatives.

“We’re involved in a race and that is a step forward,” Hurdle said.

The Diamondbacks took advantage of Colorado’s shaky bullpen in the seventh.

Chris Snyder and Jeff DaVanon chased starter Aaron Cook from the game with one-out singles and the Rockies’ bullpen couldn’t hold the 5-2 lead from there.

Tom Martin relieved Cook and faced one batter, allowing a single to Counsell to load the bases. Scott Dohmann (1-1) took over for Martin and walked Eric Byrnes to bring home a run.

Hurdle kept the procession of relievers going by bringing in Ray King for Dohmann. King gave up an RBI single to Chad Tracy and then Hurdle brought in Jose Mesa, who surrendered a long fly to Conor Jackson that Matt Holliday dropped for an error, allowing two runs to score.

Gonzalez singled home Tracy for the fifth run of the inning before pinch-hitter Tony Clark hit into a 3-6-3 double play.

The Rockies kept putting relievers in for matchup purposes, and Arizona had the answer.

“Everybody did their job,” Counsell said. “Everyone kept the line moving.”

There was some question whether the game would be played. At 59 degrees— the coolest gametime temperature in July in team history—and rain steadily falling, the field was a mess.

“You held your breath every time a ball was thrown,” Melvin said.

The Rockies had four straight extra-base hits to begin the sixth after Arizona put in Randy Choate for Cruz.

Cory Sullivan started things off with a triple, and then Todd Helton doubled him home. Choate was relieved by Edgar Gonzalez, who gave up RBI doubles to Holliday and Garrett Atkins to make it 5-2.

Cruz was making his second start after spending most of June on the disabled list for a sore right shoulder. He allowed two hits and two runs in five innings. Cruz also walked two and struck out five.

“I felt more comfortable,” Cruz said. “I was more consistent.”

Gonzalez (1-2) worked one inning to get the win and Jorge Julio pitched the ninth for his 10th save in 11 chances.

Counsell went 3-for-4 and Tracy had three hits and two RBIs for the Diamondbacks, who finished with 13 hits. Gonzalez went 2-for-4 with a homer and two RBIs and Orlando Hudson had a solo shot in the eighth.


The Diamondbacks and Rockies combined for 13 runs in the ninth inning of Arizona’s 8-7 win Saturday. It was the second time in the last 56 years that a game occurred in which both teams scored at least six runs in the ninth. The other time was July 27, 1997, when Pittsburgh beat San Francisco 10-7. … It’s only the second time the Rockies have been swept at home this season. Florida took three from Colorado on June 2-4. … Clint Barmes hit a two-run, game-tying homer in the fifth, ending a 98 at-bat homerless drought. … The Diamondbacks released Grimsley on June 7.

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