KKTV 11 News | Colorado Springs, Pueblo | Sports

Rockies looking to bounce back in Chicago

CHICAGO (AP) - After almost suffering their most devastating loss of the season, the Chicago Cubs are instead coming off their most dramatic win of the year.

The Cubs now look to match their season-high winning streak at five when they play the middle game of their three-game set with the Colorado Rockies on Tuesday.

With the bases loaded and two outs in the ninth inning, Alfonso Soriano hit a game-ending two-run single to give Chicago a 10-9 win in Monday's series opener.

The Cubs (36-39) led 8-3 after eight innings before their bullpen allowed Colorado's first six batters to score in the top of the ninth and take the lead.

Soriano, who had three home runs in the Cubs' three-game weekend sweep over the Chicago White Sox, was hitless in his first five at-bats before delivering the deciding blow.

"This was my best moment with Chicago so far," said Soriano, who is batting .400 (14-for-35) with four homers and seven RBIs during an eight-game hitting streak.

The Cubs have won 14 of 22 since June 3, but have not won five straight games since May 1-6. They are still 7 1/2 games back of first-place Milwaukee in the NL Central.

Chicago pounded out a season-high 18 hits on Monday, as rookie Mike Fontenot went 5-for-5 with two RBIs.

Fontenot has at least one hit in 15 of his 16 games since being called up from Triple-A Iowa on June 9, and is batting .424 (14-for-33) during his eight-game hitting streak.

The Rockies (38-38), meanwhile, have lost a season-high four straight games following a stretch where they won 13 of 17. They have not dropped five in a row since a six-game slide Aug. 18-24 of last season.

Troy Tulowitzki hit a three-run home run Monday to give Colorado its ninth-inning lead, and has homered in four of his last five games.

"It was a weird one, to say the least," Rockies first baseman Todd Helton said. "You have to give them credit. They didn't give up. Give us credit, we didn't give up. Just one of those nights."

The Rockies have allowed 35 runs during their skid after giving up 31 in their previous 12 contests.

Rodrigo Lopez (4-0, 2.93 ERA) tries to put an end to the losing streak when he takes the ball on Tuesday.

The Rockies have flourished with Lopez on the mound, going 7-1 in his starts. Lopez has allowed two runs in each of his last three outings, and three earned runs or less in all eight of his starts.

The right-hander gave up seven hits in 5 2-3 innings of a 4-3 victory over the New York Yankees on Thursday to win his second straight start.

Lopez spent his last six seasons with Baltimore, and this will be his first career start against the Cubs.

Chicago counters with Ted Lilly (5-4, 3.90), who again tries to shake off a poor performance.

Lilly allowed two runs or less in six of his first nine starts, but has given up five or more runs in four of his last six outings, causing his ERA to jump from 2.69.

The left-hander yielded five runs and six hits - including two homers - and matched a season high with 10 strikeouts in seven innings, but did not receive a decision in Thursday's 6-5 loss to Texas. Lilly has given up eight home runs in his last five starts after allowing just four in his first 10.

Lilly didn't give up any homers in his only career start against the Rockies, but he was hit hard. He allowed five runs and six hits in just 1 2-3 innings of a 5-3 loss for Toronto on May 21 of last season at Coors Field.

(Copyright Associated Press, All Rights Reserved)


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