Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Rockies cough up lead, Cardinals rally to win

3 photos photo - Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Adam Ottavino puts his glove on his head after retiring the St. Louis Cardinals but giving up two runs in the eighth inning of the Cardinals' 9-6 victory in a baseball game in Denver on Wednesday, June 25, 2014. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski) + caption
Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Adam Ottavino puts his glove on his head after retiring the St. Louis Cardinals but giving up two runs in the eighth inning of the Cardinals' 9-6 victory in a baseball game in Denver on Wednesday, June 25, 2014. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
The Associated Press Updated: June 25, 2014 at 9:25 pm

DENVER — The Colorado Rockies have faced adversity with injuries all season. Wednesday, they dealt with a little bad luck and let a victory slip away.

Daniel Descalso's two-out bloop double hit the line in left field and sparked a two-run eighth inning, and the St. Louis Cardinals rallied late to beat Colorado, 9-6.

Drew Stubbs homered and Justin Morneau had two hits for the Rockies, who finished their homestand 1-5.

The game featured the major league debuts of both starting pitchers. St. Louis' Marco Gonzales was sharp early before faltering. Colorado's Yohan Flande also started well before getting hit hard in his last inning.

The Cardinals scored twice in the eighth off Adam Ottavino (0-3) on RBI doubles by Descalso and Matt Carpenter to take a win away from Flande.

Ottavino was surprised when Descalso's double hit the line.

"Honestly, I thought it was a foul ball until the moment that it wasn't," he said. "I wasn't even worried when it was in the air. I don't have any answers for today. I feel horrible that I gave it up. I thought I made good pitches and they found holes."

St. Louis added two unearned runs off Nick Masset in the ninth on two of the club's four sacrifice flies.

Pat Neshek (2-0) pitched an inning of relief to earn the win. Trevor Rosenthal got four outs for his 23rd save in 26 chances.

Rosenthal walked two batters in the ninth to bring the tying run to the plate. He struck out Troy Tulowitzki on a 100 mph fastball, the 11th pitch of the at-bat, and then Morneau flew out to center to end it.

"I was hoping to come through for the team, get on base, get a hit, get him in deeper water than he was already in," Tulowitzki said. "You could tell they were having meeting after meeting. I was calling time. It was a battle. That was an important out for them. I knew it was an important at-bat for our team. It hurts."

Gonzales was unhittable the first time through the Rockies order, pitching near where he was an all-state player for Rocky Mountain High School in Fort Collins, Colorado, from 2007-10.

At one point he threw 12 straight strikes, and 30 of his first 37 pitches were strikes. He had only one blemish, a one-out walk to DJ LeMahieu in the second.

Things unraveled for him in the fourth.

Stubbs hit the first pitch of the inning into the seats in left to tie it 1-1. After Tulowitzki fouled out, the next five batters reached base. Corey Dickerson had a two-run double and scored on LeMahieu's single, and Josh Rutledge came home on Flande's groundout that made it 5-1.

Matt Adams homered and drove in two runs and Matt Holliday had three hits for the Cardinals.

Flande is the fourth starting pitcher this month to make his major league debut for the Rockies. Injuries to the staff forced the call-ups, but two of those pitchers — Eddie Butler and Christian Bergman — are now injured.

Flande allowed just one run through the first four innings before the Cardinals rallied for three in the fifth. Mark Ellis scored on a sacrifice fly, and Adams followed Holliday's double with his third home run of the series to make it 5-4.

Flande was touched for four runs and six hits, and he struck out four in five innings.

"Flande was outstanding," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "I thought he was very good. Gonzales was outstanding the first time through the lineup. We got a few off him, but he hung in, gave his team a chance to win."

Gonzales also pitched five innings. He allowed five runs and seven hits, and struck out three.

"It was the best day of my life right there," Gonzales said. "It was a blast. A lot of family that I haven't seen in a while, a lot of friends flying in from everywhere. I'm very grateful for it.

"Fortunately I was able to turn a lot of Fort Collins people into Cardinals fans today."

NOTES: Dickerson went 13 for 25 during the six-game homestand. ... The Rockies placed Bergman (fractured left wrist) on the 60-day DL. ... Butler (right rotator cuff inflammation) will be shut down for six days before he begins throwing again. ... Colorado LHP Christian Friedrich (0-1, 6.00) will pitch the first of the Rockies' four-game set at Milwaukee on Thursday.

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