KKTV 11 News | Colorado Springs, Pueblo | Sports

Rockies 2, DIamondbacks 0

PHOENIX (AP) Jeff Francis swears he pitches the same against Arizona as everyone else.

The numbers tell a different story.

Francis allowed five singles in seven innings, leading the Rockies to a 2-0 victory over Arizona on Wednesday night. Francis improved to 7-1 lifetime against the Diamondbacks. He's 25-28 against everyone else.

``I don't know what the numbers are, but I can remember some times they've hit me pretty hard,'' said Francis, who is 4-0 at Chase Field.

Not this time. Francis (3-4) allowed only two runners to reach second base. He walked two and struck out four and was lifted after throwing a season-high 119 pitches.

Francis' victory appeared in jeopardy in the ninth. Closer Brian Fuentes gave up a leadoff single to Mark Reynolds, who reached second on a one-out single by Scott Hairston.

As Reynolds led off second, the left-handed Fuentes wheeled and caught Reynolds several yards off second. He was retired on a 1-4-5 rundown.

Fuentes said he and second baseman Jamey Carroll had worked on the move in spring training practices but had not tried it in a game. It's up to Carroll to signal the play.

``Most of the time you're just doing it to keep the runner at second base,'' Fuentes said. ``It was a big sway in momentum at that particular moment.''

And it was an embarrassing moment for Reynolds, who was promoted to the majors from Double-A Mobile May 16. He went 3-for-4 but ended up looking like the goat.

Reynolds said third base coach Chip Hale mentioned that Fuentes had a good move after the game, when it was a little late to help Reynolds.

``So I really didn't know much about it,'' Reynolds said. ``He got me sleeping.''

Arizona manager Bob Melvin didn't fault Reynolds.

``I'm not going to beat him up for that,'' Melvin said. ``There's some inexperience involved, but he's continuously playing hard and swinging the bat well, swinging the bat better than anybody we have.''

With two out and a man at first, Fuentes retired Chris Snyder on a fly to deep right field to end the game, earning his 13th save in 14 chances.

Manny Corpas pitched the eighth as the Colorado bullpen shut out Arizona for the second straight game. The Rockies' relievers pitched three scoreless innings to preserve a 3-1 victory Tuesday night.

``When your bullpen pitches well, it has a tendency to make you look a little bit smarter,'' Hurdle said.

Francis received only two runs, but that was plenty against the anemic Diamondbacks, hitting .244 as a team.

Francis opened the season 1-4. But in his last four starts he has allowed a total of five earned runs in 29 1-3 innings.

Francis attributed his improvement to ``just execution. When I was going rough, there were times when I just couldn't locate my fastball. For me, it all comes down to that.''

Francis outpitched Doug Davis (2-6), who allowed two runs and six hits in seven innings. Davis walked three and struck out four.

Davis was coming off his worst start as a Diamondback a seven-run, 10-hit pounding at Pittsburgh May 18.

The Rockies didn't pound Davis; they pecked at him.

In the third, Carroll led off with a single, moved up on Francis' sacrifice bunt and scored on Ryan Spilborghs' double to give the Rockies a 1-0 lead.

Carroll walked to lead off the fifth, moved up on another Francis bunt and scored on Spilborghs' single to put Colorado ahead 2-0.

``You look at our offense tonight and it was Carroll, Francis and Spilborghs,'' Hurdle said.

^Notes:@ Arizona CF Chris Young was scratched from the lineup 90 minutes before game time. Young, who has been bothered by a groin injury, was replaced by Scott Hairston. ... The Rockies posted their first shutout of the season and their first since a 7-0 victory over St. Louis on July 24, 2006, at Denver. ... Spilborghs led off for the first time this season as Hurdle tried to inject life into his lineup. ... Davis went 0-for-1 to extend his hitless streak to 0-for-45, the longest in the major leagues. Davis' last hit came on July 4, 2006, off Cincinnati's Bronson Arroyo.

(Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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