DENVER -- The surging Rockies began their series against the National League West rival and NL Wild Card-leading Dodgers on a strong note Tuesday, riding Carlos González's four RBIs to a 7-3 victory at Coors Field.Gonzalez was 3-for-5 with two doubles, including one for two runs in the sixth, as
DENVER -- The surging Rockies began their series against the National League West rival and NL Wild Card-leading Dodgers on a strong note Tuesday, riding Carlos González's four RBIs to a 7-3 victory at Coors Field.
Gonzalez was 3-for-5 with two doubles, including one for two runs in the sixth, as the Rockies, who have won 10 of their last 12 to even their record at 53-53, shook off the news earlier Tuesday that rookie shortstop Trevor Story's thumb injury will require season-ending surgery.
The Rockies pulled to 3 1/2 games behind the Marlins, who hold the second NL Wild Card spot, and are six behind top-spot-holding Dodgers.
"I feel good with the group that we have in here," Gonzalez said. "We're turning the corner, and we're playing good baseball. That's all you can ask for. We have a great opportunity to make things happen, to reach our goals. We've played .500 ball right now, but you can't be satisfied, because you've got to continue to work every day to try to win a spot in the postseason."
Following a first-inning rain delay of 38 minutes, Gonzalez drove in the first runs on fielder's-choice grounders in the first and the three-run fourth. The Rockies chased Dodgers starter Brandon McCarthy in the fourth after he walked the first two batters, who scored on Nick Hundley's double and Charlie Blackmon's hit by pitch. Colorado added three more in the sixth off Jesse Chavez on Gonzalez's two-run double and Mark Reynolds' single.
The Dodgers could not figure out Jon Gray, who earned his first win against the team with five scoreless innings. They were only able to get two hits off him, but L.A. worked Gray's pitch count up to 96 -- his shortest inning was 13 pitches. Chris Rusin was effective in relief, limiting the Dodgers to two runs over three innings in his first appearance in nine days after coming off the 15-day disabled list with a left shoulder strain.
"Here, to have success, you have to miss bats, and Gray did a good job of that tonight," said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts. "We talk about it all the time, in this ballpark, you can't walk guys. To give them eight walks tonight like we did, it's tough to win like that."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Powerful insurance runs: Colorado's early scoring came without much hard contact -- two groundouts, a hit by pitch and a double in the gap -- but the team flexed its offensive muscles later. The first seven Rockies reached base in the sixth inning, and they would have scored more than three runs had Hundley not grounded into a double play with the bases loaded.
"There's a number of ways you can win games," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "You don't have to slug, but I feel like we can still slug. Sometimes you've got to win like we did tonight: just passing the baton and stringing together a lot of tough at-bats."
• Blackmon providing high-energy spark for Rox
Not Like Mac: After four solid starts in his return from Tommy John surgery, McCarthy has had a pair of duds. This one included a career-high five walks, with McCarthy pulling pitches to the glove side of the plate. Back-to-back walks opening the fourth inning led to his departure after 85 pitches in three-plus innings.
"Just the lack of command and feel, don't know if it was the altitude or dryness, but it was a struggle for Brandon from the get-go," said Roberts. "His pitch mix just wasn't there, and this is a tough place to pitch, especially when you don't have a feel for the baseball."
Gray likes the Dodgers: Gray has had mixed results against the Dodgers -- allowing 10 runs in 20 2/3 innings -- but he's missed a lot of bats in doing so. In four career starts against L.A., he has 12.2 strikeouts per nine innings, the second-best mark he has against a team after his 12.3 K/9 against the Padres.
"They're a really good fastball-hitting team, and I like to mix a lot," Gray said. "I think that plays.
"I think [my changeup] was the separation pitch for me. Throwing it in fastball counts, getting some good outs with it. I felt like I was locating it pretty well. It's been pretty good the last four or five starts."
Rough debuts: Jesse Chavez made his first appearance since being acquired by the Dodgers on Monday from Toronto and allowed two runs on three hits with two walks in one inning.
"Jesse's getting his feet wet on a new team and wanting to do too much," said Roberts. "He made a couple of mistakes they took advantage of."
Josh Reddick went 0-for-4 batting cleanup in his debut, although two were bullet line drives that were caught.
"For me, all I'm trying to do is win. Win that spot in the postseason. Last time I was there was 2009, my first year with the Rockies. That was the best time of my career. That's what I'm working for, that's what I always try to do, that's the main goal." -- Gonzalez
Dodgers: Right-hander Brock Stewart will be recalled to make his second Major League start for the Dodgers in the 5:40 p.m. PT game on Wednesday. Stewart allowed five runs in five innings with seven strikeouts in his debut in Milwaukee a little more than a month ago.
Rockies: Left-hander Tyler Anderson gets the call against the Dodgers at 6:40 p.m. MT Wednesday at Coors Field. In his last outing, Anderson had his best effort since his debut, limiting the Mets to one run on seven hits over six innings with five strikeouts, no walks and no homers. The Rockies have won his last four starts, and he's earned wins in three of them.
Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.
Ben Weinrib is a reporter for MLB.com based in Denver.
Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers for MLB.com since 2001.