|Colorado (45-39) «||0||0||1||1||4||2||1||1||x||10||14||0|
De La Rosa pitched effectively into the seventh inning to earn his career-best fourth straight win, Ryan Spilborghs hit a bases-loaded triple to key a four-run fifth and the Rockies beat the Washington Nationals 10-4 Wednesday to complete a three-game sweep.
Colorado's third sweep in its last five home series put the Rockies six games over .500 for the first time this season. They have gone 30-15 (.666) since May 21, the best winning percentage in the majors.
De La Rosa (6-7) has been a key part of the Rockies' resurgent play, winning six of his last seven starts after going 0-6 with four no decisions in his first 10. Manager Jim Tracy said the Rockies' determination to keep him in the rotation could prove to be one of the season's pivotal decisions.
"When you're trying to develop, patience is a key word," Tracy said. "You talk about Jorge or another young guy like Carlos Gonzalez, if they're going to get it, the only way they're going to get it, is to go out there and do it. When you get to the point where you can no longer do that any more, then it becomes time to make another decision, but we had not reached that point and Jorge turned the corner. It could end up over the course of the second half of the season being a very profitable decision."
De La Rosa credited improvements in his two-seam fastball and control, along with an unwavering belief in himself, for the turnaround.
"I never lost my confidence," he said. "I always believed in myself. I'm throwing better. I'm throwing more first pitch strikes. I have much better command."
Washington manager Manny Acta said De La Rosa made it tough on Nationals hitters.
"He has quite an arsenal of pitches and can be tough when he's throwing strikes," Acta said. "Today he was throwing strikes."
De La Rosa shut down the Nationals until tiring in the seventh inning. He struck out Ryan Zimmerman to start the inning but then walked Adam Dunn and Austin Kearns around Josh Willingham's single to load the bases and was lifted after 6 1/3 innings.
De La Rosa gave up three runs and five hits with five strikeouts and three walks.
"Any time his walks are down, he ends up pitching a good game," added Tulowitzki. "He has some of the best stuff I've seen from a lefty. Any time you pitch 94, 95 mph with a good changeup, you're going to be tough to hit. So as long as he challenges the strike zone, he gives us a chance to win."
Rookie Ross Detwiler (0-5), who allowed six runs on eight hits in four innings, gave up successive singles to Helton and Garrett Atkins and walked Tulowitzki to load the bases. Spilborghs followed with a triple to left field, clearing the bases and chasing Detwiler, the Nationals' top selection in the June 2007 draft who is still seeking his first big league win.
"I was getting ahead of some people and didn't finish them off. I left some pitches up and they got hit," Detwiler said.
|After going winless in his first 10 games, Jorge De La Rosa has now won six of seven. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Nyjer Morgan, CF||4||1||3||0||0||1||0||.281|
|Alberto Gonzalez, SS||4||0||1||0||0||0||4||.306|
|Ryan Zimmerman, 3B||4||0||0||1||0||1||1||.291|
|Adam Dunn, 1B||3||1||0||0||1||2||1||.260|
|Josh Willingham, LF||3||1||1||0||1||1||0||.290|
|Austin Kearns, RF||3||1||0||0||1||2||1||.197|
|Anderson Hernandez, 2B||4||0||1||2||0||0||0||.255|
|Wil Nieves, C||2||0||1||1||0||0||0||.234|
|Ross Detwiler, P||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.077|
|Tyler Clippard, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a- Ronnie Belliard, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||1||.175|
|Ron Villone, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|b- Willie Harris, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||1||.245|
|Julian Tavarez, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a-struck out for Clippard in the 6th|
|b-struck out for Villone in the 7th|
|2B - Nyjer Morgan (9, Daley), Wil Nieves (4, De La Rosa)|
|SF - Wil Nieves (3)|
|RBI - Ryan Zimmerman (51), Anderson Hernandez 2 (23), Wil Nieves (13)|
|Team LOB - 3|
|E - Adam Dunn 2 (10, Misplayed grounder), Wil Nieves (4, Dropped fly)|
|Ross Detwiler (L,0-5)||4||8||6||6||3||3||0||6.40|
|Pitches-Strikes - Ross Detwiler 89-52, Tyler Clippard 25-15, Ron Villone 19-10, Julian Tavarez 43-27|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ross Detwiler 4-6, Julian Tavarez 3-1|
|Batters Faced - Ross Detwiler 24, Tyler Clippard 5, Ron Villone 5, Julian Tavarez 11|
|Dexter Fowler, CF||3||2||2||1||2||0||0||.252|
|Clint Barmes, 2B||5||0||1||1||0||1||4||.282|
|Todd Helton, 1B||3||2||2||1||2||0||0||.317|
|Garrett Atkins, 3B||5||1||1||0||0||1||5||.224|
|Matt Daley, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Troy Tulowitzki, SS||4||2||3||2||1||0||0||.253|
|Ryan Spilborghs, RF||5||1||1||3||0||1||3||.257|
|Yorvit Torrealba, C||4||1||1||1||1||1||1||.232|
|Carlos Gonzalez, LF||5||1||3||1||0||1||1||.224|
|Jorge De La Rosa, P||3||0||0||0||0||2||4||.037|
|Josh Fogg, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a- Omar Quintanilla, PH-3B||2||0||0||0||0||1||1||.194|
|a-grounded out for Fogg in the 7th|
|2B - Dexter Fowler (19, Detwiler), Clint Barmes (21, Tavarez), Todd Helton (24, Detwiler), Yorvit Torrealba (3, Clippard), Carlos Gonzalez (4, Detwiler)|
|3B - Ryan Spilborghs (2, Detwiler), Carlos Gonzalez (2, Tavarez)|
|HR - Troy Tulowitzki (14, Villone)|
|RBI - Dexter Fowler (21), Clint Barmes (43), Todd Helton (56), Troy Tulowitzki 2 (35), Ryan Spilborghs 3 (33), Yorvit Torrealba (8), Carlos Gonzalez (5)|
|2-OUT RBI - Dexter Fowler (9), Clint Barmes (20), Carlos Gonzalez (2)|
|SB - Dexter Fowler (17, 2nd base off Tavarez/Nieves)|
|Team LOB - 11|
|Outfield Assists - Ryan Spilborghs 1|
|DP - Barmes-Tulowitzki-Helton, Helton|
|Jorge De La Rosa (W,6-7)||6.1||5||3||3||3||5||0||5.08|
|Pitches-Strikes - Jorge De La Rosa 108-67, Josh Fogg 14-10, Matt Daley 31-27|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jorge De La Rosa 6-5, Matt Daley 2-1|
|Batters Faced - Jorge De La Rosa 24, Josh Fogg 3, Matt Daley 7|
|Attendance - 23098|
|Game Time - 3:03|
|Temperature - 87|
|Umpires - Home - Marvin Hudson, First Base - Lance Barksdale, Second Base - Angel Hernandez, Third Base - Randy Marsh|