DENVER -- Greg Smith likes the National League a whole lot better than the American League. The perks at the plate are great, too.
Smith (1-1) struck out eight over seven innings, allowing two runs and six hits for his first major league win since Sept. 6, 2008, for Oakland against Baltimore.
"I love the National League after being in the American League for a year -- I've heard it referred to as the Hairy Chested League: grip and throw it as hard as you can and see how far you can hit it," said Smith, who spent last season in the minors dealing with shoulder troubles.
"The National League's more my style. You know, the strategy with the running game or the hitting behind a runner or the hit-and-run or you've got to sacrifice a guy over."
Plus, he gets to grab a bat a few times.
"Yeah, I'm not going to argue with that," he said.
Smith collected his first career RBI when he stroked a run-scoring double into the left-field alley in the third and plated another run with a fielder's choice groundout in the seventh.
"The pitchers that are able to stay in the game the longest are the guys that can control the bat," Rockies slugger Ian Stewart said. "They can lay down a bunt, where the manager doesn't feel like he has to pinch hit for him."
Smith replaced fellow lefty Jeff Francis (strained left shoulder) in the Rockies' rotation at the end of spring training. He had his second straight solid start, although he lost his first game in Milwaukee.
Maine (0-1) tied a career high by allowing eight runs in just three innings. He also yielded seven hits and walked three.
"I very rarely pitch like this," he said. "It's hard. I'm doing my stuff in between starts. I'm doing the right things. I just can't put it together. ... This is awful right now."
Brad Hawpe doubled home the first two runs for Colorado in the first inning but left one batter later with tightness in his left quadriceps. He was replaced by Ryan Spilborghs and is listed as day to day.
The Rockies scored all six of their runs in the third with two outs. Stewart started it off with an RBI single off Fernando Tatis' first-base mitt that barely scored Todd Helton from second -- he slid in just ahead of the tag.
Seth Smith followed Greg Smith's RBI double -- his second hit in the majors -- with his first homer of the season, a two-run shot over the center-field wall that made it 8-0.
Even the third out was an adventure as Maine nearly overthrew Tatis on Dexter Fowler's comebacker.
"I'm getting two outs quickly, it's just one pitch away, I don't get that last guy and it seems to snowball," Maine said. "It's more a mental process and it's something I have to evaluate. I have to work on my fastball. It's a weird thing, I've thrown more off-speed pitches for strikes than I have fastballs for strikes.
"It's frustrating, it's disappointing to go through the bullpen, I hate it. I hate everything that's going on for me now."
Mets manager Jerry Manuel said he didn't think Maine's troubles were physical, but allowed that he was concerned. The right-hander won 15 games in 2007 but has dealt with shoulder issues for two years and has struggled to return to his pre-injury form.
After a poor spring, Maine watched his ERA balloon to 13.50 with a fastball stuck in the upper 80s.
"I don't have any pain but the shoulder is cranky," Maine said. "Obviously I don't have normal velocity but I have to make changes. I have to adapt to that. I'm more than capable. I've got no pain in my shoulder, just a little bit cranky."
Just like his manager.
"It's a struggle when you get down that many runs that early," Manuel said after the Mets fell to 2-5.
- David Wright's second homer got the Mets on the board in the sixth.
- Hawpe is the second Rockies OF to leave a game with an injury in three days. Carlos Gonzalez strained his left hamstring Sunday against San Diego. Colorado manager Jim Tracy was prepared to use Gonzalez as a pinch hitter until Barmes drew a bases-loaded walk that made it 9-2 in the seventh.
- Free-agent slugger Carlos Delgado took a break from his rehab following hip surgery to visit his former Mets teammates before the game.