Rockies-Padres Preview

The Associated Press

Though the San Diego Padres' longest skid of the season has ended, building on their first July win might be difficult against Colorado's Jorge De La Rosa.

The left-hander looks to continue his success against the Padres and help the visiting Rockies prevent their division foe from winning consecutive games for the first time in almost three weeks Wednesday night.

Eric Stults pitched a four-hitter for his second complete game of the season and Alexi Amarista drove in both runs as San Diego (41-50) snapped a 10-game slide with Tuesday's 2-1 victory over Colorado. Stults threw 122 pitches and talked his way into finishing the game.

"I got out there and when I hit the dirt I saw the look in his eyes that he wasn't ready to come out," manager Bud Black said of his trip to the mound in the ninth.

Though the Padres have averaged 2.5 runs in the last 11 games, they can breathe easier for the moment and focus on trying to win back-to-back games for the first time since June 20-21.

Accomplishing that feat might not come against De La Rosa (8-5, 3.19 ERA), who despite a 5.40 ERA in 13 starts versus San Diego, is 5-1 and received an average 7.41 runs of support in those games. He's 5-0 with a 4.97 ERA in his last nine, including 1-0 with a 3.27 ERA in two this season.

De La Rosa is 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA in four starts at Petco Park.

He allowed three runs and seven hits in 5 1-3 innings of a 5-0 loss at Arizona on Friday to fall to 1-1 with a 2.22 ERA in his last four outings overall.

"It wasn't his sharpest night, but I thought he kept it close enough, gave us a chance," manager Walt Weiss told the Rockies' official website.

All-Star Everth Cabrera is 3 for 15 with seven strikeouts against De La Rosa, but had two hits Tuesday after he went 1 for 17 in the previous four contests.

Scheduled San Diego starter Andrew Cashner (5-4, 3.82) went 1-0 with a 2.78 ERA in five June starts before he allowed a season-high six runs, three walks and failed to make it out of the third inning in Friday's 8-5 loss at Washington.

"I made some good pitches and some bad pitches - I felt like I couldn't catch a break," Cashner said told the Padres' official website. "The biggest thing was I didn't locate my fastball down and away. That's been a big pitch for me."

The right-hander is 0-1 with a 7.59 ERA in two starts against the Rockies (43-48), but yielded three runs in seven innings of a 6-5, 12-inning win at Coors Field on June 6.

Catcher Wilin Rosario had two of the four hits Tuesday for Colorado, which has dropped seven of nine and continues to play without injured stars Carlos Gonzalez (finger) and Troy Tulowitzki (rib).

"Stults got a lot of ground ball outs,'' Weiss said. "We rolled over a lot of soft stuff for him. We couldn't get anything together offensively.''

Gonzalez, who missed the last two games, is considered day to day.

Colorado's Michael Cuddyer is 7 for 27 (.259) since he batted .372 during a franchise-record 27-game hitting streak.

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