Published: July 28, 2013
The wait was worth it for fans who struck through a 103-minute rain delay on a chilly Sunday night at Security Service Field.
Sky Sox starter Jeff Manship threw a season-high eight innings (102 pitches, 67 strikes) and seven strikeouts, holding Fresno in check before the Colorado Springs offense scored five during a decisive seventh inning in a 7-2 victory.
The win ended the hosts' six-game losing streak and gives the Sky Sox (55-52) a chance at a split Monday against the Grizzlies (49-60).
It was Manship's best outing since a four-hit, complete game shutout for Triple-A Rochester in 2010.
"The key for me was I got ahead in the count and was able to pick my pitches," Manship said. "I was a little erratic (warming up) in the bullpen so I am happy I was able to dial in."
The Sky Sox roughed up Fresno reliever Steve Edlefsen with three singles, a fielding error, a double steal and a RBI triple by Lars Davis to pull away for a 7-2 lead.
Fresno flirted with its own big inning but Manship (6-8) would have none of that.
"Manship was unbelievable," Ben Paulsen said. "It was fun to watch. It was really important for us to get that big inning. (Kent) Matthes made a big bunt to get us going."
An RBI double by Fresno second baseman Nick Noonan scored Gary Brown, who reached off a leadoff single to start the sixth against Manship, who bounced back with three outs to keep the game tied at 2-2.
"He has been pretty consistent in his last four starts," manager Glenallen Hill said. "I am happy to see him settle down and settle in."
Manship had a scare in the fourth. A sharp hit by Francisco Peguero up the middle forced the pitcher to duck out of the way, causing him to land awkwardly on his left leg.
After an injury delay, Manship faced Johnny Monell, who hit an RBI double off the left-center fence to make it 2-1, Colorado Springs. He got a gentle pop-out to end the inning.
"My knee hurt for about 20 seconds," Manship said. "I was hoping it wasn't just adrenalin that made it feel OK. It feels fine now."
In the third, Ryan Wheeler hit a two-run double off the fence for a 2-0 Sky Sox lead.
The Rockies recalled left-handed pitcher Jeff Francis, sending righty Collin McHugh back. . The Sky Sox placed lefty Hisanori Takahashi on the disabled list with a score right Achilles' tendon, retroactive to Friday.