Rosario’s 4 RBIs help Rockies end skid
Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Francisco Liriano, left, is consoled by pitcher Jeff Locke after Liriano was pulled from the mound against the Colorado Rockies in the third inning of a 10-1 loss for the Pirates Friday night.
DENVER – Wilin Rosario doubled and homered to drive in four runs, leading a Rockies offense that batted around in the first and second innings, and Colorado snapped a five-game losing streak by beating the Pittsburgh Pirates 10-1 on Friday night.
Francisco Liriano (12-5) bore the brunt of the Rockies’ outburst in his first appearance at hitter-friendly Coors Field, allowing a career-high 10 runs on 12 hits in 2 1-3 innings, his shortest outing of the season. With the game out of reach, Pirates infielder Josh Harrison was summoned by manager Clint Hurdle to relieve Jared Hughes and got pinch-hitter Corey Dickerson to fly out to left to close out the eighth.
Jorge De La Rosa (11-6) went five innings, shaking off a blow near his pitching shoulder from Jordy Mercer’s comebacker and keeping the Pirates in check by working out of two bases-loaded jams early.
Pittsburgh, one of only three major league teams with at least 70 wins this season (Atlanta and Boston are the others), lost for the first time in six games.
For the Rockies, coming off a 1-9 road trip and a pre-game team meeting called by manager Walt Weiss to discuss the club’s recent play, it was the first time they had scored double digits since also putting up 10 runs in a victory over Philadelphia two months ago.
The Rockies had averaged just over a run during their skid, which included a 5-2 loss a week ago at PNC Park in which Liriano got the win with seven scoreless innings, lowering his ERA to 2.02. It increased to 2.83 after the second-chance shelling by the Rockies.
The Pirates opened the game with four consecutive singles off De La Rosa but failed to score. Leadoff man Starling Marte was picked off first base by De La Rosa after singling. Jordy Mercer, Andrew McCutchen and Russell Martin hit successive singles to load the bases but De La Rosa fanned Pedro Alvarez and got Gaby Sanchez on a groundout to end the inning.
Liriano retired the first batter he faced, Dexter Fowler, on a liner to short but the next six Rockies batters reached on a walk and base hits, including RBI singles by Michael Cuddyer and Todd Helton and Rosario’s two-run double.
Fowler started the second with a single to deep short and took second on shortstop Mercer’s throwing error. Two outs later, Cuddyer singled to left for the second of his three RBIs on the night and Rosario turned on a 93 mph fastball for his 16th homer of the season. Nolan Arenado added an RBI double and Charlie Culberson capped the Rockies’ five-run second inning with an RBI single.
Pittsburgh got a run on a bases-loaded sacrifice fly by Mercer in the second. After McCutchen walked to re-load the bases with two outs, Martin grounded out.
The Rockies added a final run in the third on a fielder’s choice by Cuddyer.
Liriano saw a personal three-game winning streak snapped. … Pittsburgh began a stretch where it plays 13 of 16 on the road. … A.J. Burnett (5-7), who went the distance in beating the Rockies 5-1 last time out, is set to pitch Game 2 on Saturday night against Colorado’s Juan Nicasio (6-6). … Since mid-June, Rosario is batting .328 with 11 doubles, a triple, 6 home runs and 24 RBIs in 38 games.