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Rockies' win streak ends at 4 after Marlins' slam

Parra goes deep, but home run issues continue to plague Shaw
MLB.com @harding_at_mlb

DENVER -- Even on a bright, sunshiny Saturday, Rockies relief pitcher Bryan Shaw couldn't escape the cloud that has hovered over his season.

Shaw coughed up a J.T. Realmuto grand slam in the seventh inning as the Rockies saw their win streak end at four games with a 6-2 loss to the Marlins at Coors Field.

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DENVER -- Even on a bright, sunshiny Saturday, Rockies relief pitcher Bryan Shaw couldn't escape the cloud that has hovered over his season.

Shaw coughed up a J.T. Realmuto grand slam in the seventh inning as the Rockies saw their win streak end at four games with a 6-2 loss to the Marlins at Coors Field.

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The homer -- which was Realmuto's 11th and extended Shaw's homers-served total to a career-high-matching eight -- completed an outing that was a microcosm of a Shaw season that has set his ERA at 7.57.

In the first year of a three-year, $27 million contract, Shaw has seen his share of poor luck on soft hits, but the bigger problem is he has compounded the issue with mistake pitches. And Saturday's pitch, according to Shaw, was not a mistake, but a plan that didn't work.

Video: MIA@COL: Realmuto clobbers a grand slam in the 7th

Realmuto had fouled off three pitches inside and down. So after catcher Tony Wolters visited the mound for discussion, Shaw fired a 94.4-mph cutter high and outside, then watched Realmuto trot the bases.

"It wasn't a bad pitch, if that's what you want to call it -- it was where we were trying to go," said Shaw, who had not given up a grand slam previously. "I guess you could go higher, but looking at the Statcast™ stuff it was out of the zone, up. That's kind of where you want to throw those pitches."

Turns out a high pitch was exactly what Realmuto wanted.

"A guy on third and less than two outs, I was just trying my best to hit a fly ball, put the ball in play, basically," Realmuto said. "Get a pitch up in the zone and put a good swing on it."

Video: MIA@COL: Black on Anderson, 6-2 loss to Marlins

It was Shaw's Majors-leading 41st appearance, even after a two-day rest because manager Bud Black wanted to lighten his load.

With Adam Ottavino and Wade Davis the team's eighth- and ninth-inning lead protectors, and inexperienced Jeff Hoffman and Brooks Pounders in the 'pen, the Rockies need Shaw to produce in his opportunities. With four right-handed-hitting batters in the offing, Black wasn't going to either of his lefties -- rookie Harrison Musgrave or struggling veteran Chris Rusin to face Realmuto on Saturday.

Black allowed that there is a chance Shaw could be moved to a less high-stakes role. But with righty Scott Oberg and lefty Mike Dunn beginning one- or two-inning injury rehab stints Saturday, and righty Carlos Estevez not yet cleared for rehab, an option Black liked wasn't available Saturday.

"Whether it's a combination of some mechanics that we're focusing on where it's mental, whether it's trying too hard to get this done like a lot of players do when they come to a new team -- you've got a contract and you're trying to impress, and you're not quite loose and free," Black said. "We might have to take a step back from Bryan if we get some of our guys back."

Video: MIA@COL: Anderson whiffs Rivera swinging in the 2nd

Shaw replaced Tyler Anderson (4-3) -- solid for six innings before yielding three hits to open the seventh -- with a 2-1 deficit, no outs and two on in the seventh. Shaw's first hitter, Starlin Castro, hit a 70-footer toward third baseman Nolan Arenado, whose barehand pickup and throw were rewarded with an out call by first-base umpire Jeff Nelson. Replay overturned the call and loaded the bases.

It seemed Shaw righted himself when he forced a Brian Anderson grounder to DJ LeMahieu, whose strong throw beat Bryan Holaday to the plate. But no.

"Get another ground ball like we have and we're good," said Shaw, who has given up eight homers this year after yielding that number with the Indians in 74 games in 2015 and again in 75 games in '16. "We tried to elevate there, and he hit it."

Gerardo Parra trimmed a run in the bottom of the seventh by lining his fourth homer of the season off Brad Ziegler. It was his second RBI of the game.

Video: MIA@COL: Parra plates CarGo with sac fly in the 4th

Anderson fanned eight and gave up seven hits, including Derek Dietrich's 10th homer with two out in the fourth.

"Tyler pitched well -- good use of the change, the cutter and the fastball," Black said. "I'm not sure whether he tired in the seventh, but the ball got elevated a little bit."

The Rockies scored once on three hits in six innings and struck out eight times against Marlins starter Trevor Richards (2-4). The Rockies' four hits were a season low at Coors.

"He had us off balance pretty much the whole day," Black said. "You saw a lot of swing-throughs on his change. He beat us with the fastball. He pitched."

Video: MIA@COL: Maybin lays out to make spectacular catch

MITEL REPLAY OF THE DAY
Arenado is one of the top third basemen in the game, a special talent who makes that barehand pickup and throw seemingly in his sleep. But Castro hustled up the line, and after the Marlins challenged, the replay showed that Castro beat the throw.

Video: MIA@COL: Castro legs out an infield single in the 7th

UP NEXT
Righty German Marquez (5-7, 5.20 ERA), who toughed out six innings (four runs on six hits) to beat the Mets in his last start for his first win since May 27, will face the Marlins and lefty Caleb Smith (5-6, 4.03) in Sunday's 1:10 p.m. MT series finale. Marquez is 2-4 with a 7.45 ERA at Coors this season and 9-7 with a 5.22 ERA there in his career.

Thomas Harding has covered the Rockies since 2000, and for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter and like his Facebook page.

Colorado Rockies, Bryan Shaw