The Rockies needed a timely hit Monday night to ensure their seven-game homestand started with positive momentum.
Catcher Elias Diaz made it happen.
His go-ahead home run in the sixth inning powered Colorado to a 5-3 victory over the Marlins at Coors Field. It’s really no surprise. Diaz has been the team’s Mr. Clutch all season, batting .436 with runners in scoring position to open a four-game series versus Miami.
His solo pop Monday night (Diaz’s fourth home run of the season) helped stave off a Marlins’ comeback attempt and put Colorado back in the win column after a recent three-game skid in Texas. Diaz also ripped an RBI double earlier in the game and threw out a Marlins runner at third.
“There is an inner calmness to his play,” manager Bud Black said. “His at bats have been really solid all year. You've seen the clutch at bats. You've seen the pinch-hit at bats. I mean, the total game is under control with Elias."
Black provided health updates Monday with reporters at Coors Field on several players before their home tilt against Miami.
— There is still no timetable for first baseman C.J. Cron’s return from a lower-back injury. He landed on the 10-day injured list (May 12) but has not progressed to baseball activities. Cron is batting .228 with six home runs, nine doubles and 20 RBI in 36 games played this season.
— Brendan Rodgers took some infield groundballs before Monday’s game for the first time since spring training shoulder surgery. The Rockies expected him to miss the entire season. But there is now some optimism that Rodgers could return before the end of the year based on his progress.
— Right-handed pitcher Noah Davis is nearing a return to the starting rotation after dealing with elbow inflammation. RHP Tyler Kinley is expected to be back in the bullpen before the All-Star break after elbow surgery.
Rockies 5, Marlins 3
What happened: Colorado snapped a three-game slide with a resilient home win. The Rockies were boosted by improved pitching after giving up 13 and 11 runs in prior road losses to the Rangers.
On the mound: Chase Anderson, in his second Rockies start since being claimed on waivers, was mostly solid over 5 ⅔ innings. Things got shaky in the third and fourth with one run allowed in each inning. Anderson loaded the bases with four straight walks and Miami grounded into a fielder’s choice to tie the game, 2-2. Jake Bird replaced Anderson in the sixth and he pitched 1 ⅓ scoreless innings. Justin Lawrence gave up a run in the eighth. Pierce Johnson earned the save.
At the plate: Colorado opened the game with a 2-0 lead after a three-hit first inning. Jurickson Profar got things started with a double, before a Kris Bryant's RBI single and an Elias Diaz's RBI double. Diaz launched a solo homer in the sixth that put the Rockies ahead after Miami tied the game. Colorado padded its advantage in the eighth with a Profar two-run double.
What’s next: Miami Marlins (RHP Eury Perez, 1-0) vs. Colorado Rockies (LHP Austin Gomber, 3-4), 6:40 p.m. Tuesday (AT&T SportsNet) at Coors Field.
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