Kansas City at Colorado

Kansas City
W: J. Francis (6-5) L: R. Hernandez (5-8)
S: B. Fuentes (8)
HR: KC - None   COL - None

Rockies 4, Royals 2

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

DENVER -- For one night, home runs weren't the issue at Coors Field.

Jeff Francis pitched seven strong innings, and a pair of bases-loaded walks were the difference in a matchup between the two worst teams in the major leagues as the Colorado Rockies beat the Kansas City Royals 4-2 Saturday night.

"If we don't get the help off the mound from (Francis) we might still be playing," Colorado manager Clint Hurdle said. "Nine walks, a hit batter, seven hits and we scored only four runs in this ballpark,"

Runelvys Hernandez forced in runs with walks to Francis and Eddy Garabito in the second inning.

"For whatever reason he couldn't find the strike zone," Kansas City manager Buddy Bell said. "He still gave us a quality enough start to give us a chance to win."

Kansas City dropped to an AL-worst 25-48 with its fifth straight loss. The only major league team with a worse record is the Colorado (24-48).

Hernandez (5-8) walked a season-high seven in 5 1/3 innings, allowing three runs and four hits. Yet, he minimized the damage.

"He forced us to have a good outing from Francis," Hurdle said. "And Francis gave it to us."

Francis (6-5), who had lost three straight starts since beating Cincinnati on June 3, allowed two runs and six hits in seven innings, struck out six and walked one. He improved to 5-1 with a 3.50 ERA at Coors Field this season and 7-1 with a 3.29 ERA in his career at the hitter-friendly ballpark.

Francis credited a simple adjustment to his arm motion.

"I concentrated on worrying about my arm angle instead of everything in my delivery," Francis said. "I thought about one thing instead of 100 things at once."

Jay Witasick and Brian Fuentes finished with hitless relief, with Fuentes getting his eighth save in 10 chances.

Colorado took a 3-0 lead in the second, getting only three hits. Brad Hawpe led off with an infield single to second, Desi Relaford singled and Danny Ardoin walked on four pitches.

Francis walked on a 3-2 pitch to force in the first run, Garabito took four straight balls and Garrett Atkins hit a sacrifice fly.

"It was hard today, I couldn't throw strikes," Hernandez said. "I gave up a walk to the pitcher, and in my career I've never not been able to throw strikes to a pitcher."

Francis retired 10 straight going into the sixth, then allowed Terrence Long's sacrifice fly and Justin Huber's RBI single. Atkins hit an RBI double with two outs in the eighth off Mike Wood.


San Diego Chargers QB Drew Brees took batting practice before the game. ... Emil Brown has a 12-game hitting streak. ... The Rockies plan to have RHP Mike DeJean come in for a physical and a bullpen session on Sunday. He was released by the New York Mets on Monday.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Players of the Game

G. Atkins
AB 4
R 0
H 1
HR 0

J. Francis
IP 7.0
H 6
ER 2
BB 1
K 6

Related Video

Kansas City Royals
Angel Berroa, SS4010000 .248
David DeJesus, CF4010000 .280
Tony Graffanino, 2B-1B3100112 .317
Emil Brown, RF4120011 .292
Terrence Long, LF3001012 .274
Justin Huber, 1B3011010 .250
    Mike Wood, P0000000 .000
   a- Matt Stairs, PH1000000 .255
John Buck, C3010000 .219
Joe McEwing, 3B3000011 .278
Runelvys Hernandez, P2000001 .000
    Ruben Gotay, 2B1000010 .251
a-flied out for Wood in the 9th
SF - Terrence Long (2)
RBI - Terrence Long (22), Justin Huber (2)
2-OUT RBI - Justin Huber (2)
SB - Emil Brown (2, 2nd base off Francis/Ardoin)
Team LOB - 4
DP - Berroa-Gotay-Graffanino
Kansas City Royals
Runelvys Hernandez (L,5-8) 5.1433720 4.64
Mike Wood 2.2311210 3.50
IBB - Hawpe by Mike Wood, by Helton
HBP - Garabito (by Mike Wood)
Pitches-Strikes - Runelvys Hernandez 102-53, Mike Wood 42-21
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Runelvys Hernandez 4-10, Mike Wood 4-2
Batters Faced - Runelvys Hernandez 27, Mike Wood 13
Colorado Rockies
Eddy Garabito, 2B2001203 .321
Garrett Atkins, 3B4012004 .291
Todd Helton, 1B4010103 .253
Preston Wilson, CF5000003 .265
Bradley Hawpe, RF2110200 .289
Dustan Mohr, LF3000022 .189
   a- Cory Sullivan, PH-LF1000012 .291
Desi Relaford, SS3110102 .261
Danny Ardoin, C3120100 .257
Jeff Francis, P0001200 .040
    Jay Witasick, P0000000 .000
   b- Jorge Piedra, PH1110000 .400
    Brian Fuentes, P0000000 .000
a-struck out for Mohr in the 7th
b-singled for Witasick in the 8th
2B - Garrett Atkins (9, Wood), Danny Ardoin (3, Ru. Hernandez)
SF - Garrett Atkins (3)
SH - Jeff Francis (3)
RBI - Eddy Garabito (7), Garrett Atkins 2 (27), Jeff Francis (3)
2-OUT RBI - Garrett Atkins (11)
SB - Jorge Piedra (2, 2nd base off Wood/Buck)
Team LOB - 12
Outfield Assists - Dustan Mohr 1
Colorado Rockies
Jeff Francis (W,6-5) 7622160 5.36
Jay Witasick (H,8) 1000000 2.22
Brian Fuentes (S,8) 1000000 2.83
Pitches-Strikes - Jeff Francis 89-65, Jay Witasick 5-4, Brian Fuentes 20-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jeff Francis 6-8, Jay Witasick 2-1
Batters Faced - Jeff Francis 27, Jay Witasick 3, Brian Fuentes 3
Game Information
Attendance - 27673
Game Time - 2:25
Temperature - 77
Umpires - Home - Tim McClelland, First Base - Chuck Meriwether, Second Base - Mike Everitt, Third Base - Tim Timmons