Late-inning offense carries Arizona to winPosted: Updated:
Jeremy Hellickson has found a good groove when pitching at home in Chase Field, and that's not so easy to do in the hitter-friendly ballpark.
Facing one of the major league's top offenses for the first time added to Hellickson's challenge Thursday night. He responded with his longest outing in almost a year, holding the Colorado Rockies to a run on three hits with six strikeouts over seven innings as the Arizona Diamondbacks beat Colorado 8-1.
David Peralta had a tiebreaking, two-run triple with two outs in the sixth off Rockies starter Chris Rusin, helping Hellickson (6-5) to his fourth straight win at home.
"It was definitely one of my best games stat line-wise, but I've been feeling good for a while now," Hellickson said. "The fastball command and the life on my fastball makes all the difference with the curve ball and changeup.
"I've watched them a few times and it doesn't matter who I'm facing, I just have to work to my strength," Hellickson said, "and that's keeping the ball down and getting ahead of guys and throwing strikes."
A.J. Pollock led off the sixth with a home run. Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado's first of two errors prolonged the inning before Peralta sent a hard grounder just inside the right field line to drive in Welington Castillo and Aaron Hill.
"You always have to be ready for any situation," Peralta said. "So I had an opportunity and situation to help the team to get the lead, so I was very patient at home plate just waiting for a good pitch."
Peralta has seven hits in his last 16 at-bats against lefties, something he worked on in the offseason.
"He was expecting to get playing time against lefties (this season) and I think he was a little disappointed he wasn't," manager Chip Hale said, "so he's proven to me he deserves to play against lefties."
Yasmany Tomas continued to have success against the Rockies, lacing a two-run double in the seventh off reliever Scott Oberg. Tomas is 12 for 30 (.400) with three doubles and 10 RBIs in seven games against Colorado this season.
Hill capped off the four-run seventh with a two-run double. Peralta, Pollock and Paul Goldschmidt had two hits each.
Rusin shut out the Diamondbacks for five innings and drove in the Rockies' run with a two-out single in the fifth. Rusin (3-3) allowed three runs - one earned - and six hits. He struck out six with two walks.
"I did a good job of keeping the ball down and keeping them off-balance," Rusin said. "I was able to get quick outs up until that sixth inning. I left a pitch up to Pollock and Peralta I left it up. I didn't do anything to get him off the fastball inside, so he just turned on it."
Troy Tulowitzki's ninth-inning single gave him a 15-game hitting streak, and he's reached base safely in 30 straight games. Both are the longest active streaks in the majors.
STUBBS RETURNS TO ROCKIES
The Rockies recalled outfielder Drew Stubbs from Triple-A Albuquerque before the game, sending utility player Rafael Ynoa to the minors.
Stubbs, in his seventh major league season, struck out 31 times in 51 at-bats before Colorado sent him down in May.
Stubbs was used as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning and flied out to deep right field.
Rockies: 2B D.J. LeMahieu, batting .296 in 75 games, got Thursday off for rest. "He's grinding, and he had a tough series in Oakland," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "He's one of our guys that goes to post every day, so every once in a while I have to take care of him, let him catch his breath."
Diamondbacks: Archie Bradley got a scan and second opinion on his injured right shoulder on Wednesday, which revealed no significant damage beyond inflammation, and he was scheduled for a follow-up exam in Phoenix Thursday. Bradley has been on the 15-day disabled list since June 4.