Held out of the starting lineup for precaution, and to feed playing time to the other lefty-hitting outfielders in the corner rotation -- Gerardo Parra and Carlos Gonzalez -- Dahl entered as a pinch-hitter in the seventh. He promptly drove Cory Gearrin's first pitch the opposite way to left field for a two-run homer in the Rockies' 11-4 victory over the Giants at Coors Field.
Manager Bud Black received solid nights from all three. The favorable matchup with Giants starter Jeff Samardzija paid off with a single in Parra's first at-bat, before Samardzija left at the end of the inning with right shoulder soreness. Parra and Gonzalez each went 2-for-5 with an RBI. Gonzalez is 8-for-13 in his last three games.
And Dahl, with his lower leg heavily wrapped, delivered in the game-breaking four-run seventh against Gearrin.
The homer was Dahl's fourth of the season and first of his career as a pinch-hitter. It was his second straight delivery in the pinch.
Dahl singled left-on-left off the Giants' Tony Watson in the ninth inning Monday. After being caught on a pickoff move, Dahl sped into second and slid into Crawford. His slide dislodged the ball, but he ended up writhing in pain. Dahl finished the inning but did not enter defensively.
"It's kind of a big bruise and it started swelling a little bit and we wrapped it up, and I elevated it all night last night so the swelling wasn't too bad," Dahl said before taking full batting practice, but limiting his on-field running before Tuesday's game.
Dahl, who said he is considering wearing a shin guard to protect the leg, appeared in each of the 12 games (eight starts) before Tuesday -- a decent sample size, considering that the usage pattern in the last road trip and current homestand indicates he is considered a starter when healthy. The results are wild.
The overall slash line: .194 batting average, .189 on-base percentage and .306 slugging percentage. A 2-for-22 performance in the last eight games of the road trip dragged the numbers down. But he was the epitome of an unlucky player on the trip.
Dahl's actual wOBA on the road trip was a microscopic .080. But the quality of his contact says his expected wOBA was .300.
In the first four games of the current homestand, Dahl was 5-for-14 (.357) with a home run and four RBIs. And while he had well-documented bad luck on his game-ending line drive Saturday night against the Reds, the quality of Dahl's contact produced a .390 wOBA -- above his expected wOBA of .387.
Dahl appreciates the ample playing time on a first-place club.
"It's a good feeling, being on a good team, winning and that's what I'm trying to help with -- whether it's starting and getting four or five at-bats or pinch-hitting, because usually that's a big spot," Dahl said.
• Former Rockies lefty closer Brian Fuentes, a member of the 2007 National League championship team and the 2009 postseason squad, will represent the Rockies as a baseball dignitary at the 2018 MLB Draft on Monday, MLB announced Tuesday.
• Rockies second baseman DJ LeMahieu went 1-for-5 Tuesday and played five innings of defense in Scottsdale, Ariz., at extended spring camp -- his first action under game conditions since suffering a left thumb injury May 13. He will play again in extended spring Wednesday.