Stellar pitching lifts D-backs to 3rd straight win
PHOENIX -- Solid pitching -- beginning with right-hander Chase Anderson -- and just enough fundamental offense lifted the D-backs to a 3-1 victory over the Rockies at Chase Field on Wednesday night.
Anderson (7-6), coming off a career-best 10 strikeouts in his previous start, held the Rockies to one run and four hits in 5 1/3 innings, before giving way to the bullpen. Relievers Keith Hessler, Randall Delgado, David Hernandez, Matt Reynolds and Daniel Hudson (third save) combined to hold the Rockies scoreless.
"They did a good job, all of them," D-backs manager Chip Hale said. "We'll see what we have available tomorrow before [closer Brad] Ziegler is back on Friday."
The D-backs out-hit the Rockies, 8-4, and went 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position. However, Phil Gosselin (in the fifth) and David Peralta (in the seventh) provided sacrifice flies. Arizona's only hit with runners in scoring position was Jarrod Saltalamacchia's RBI single in the sixth.
The Rockies' Chad Bettis (8-6) held the D-backs to two runs (one earned) and struck out six in six innings. Bettis posted a 2.97 ERA in his final seven starts after returning from right elbow inflammation.
Rockies manager Walt Weiss stayed with Bettis after he had given up Saltalamacchia's run-scoring hit. With two men on base and nobody out, Bettis struck out a pair and ended the frame on Aaron Hill's deep fly to center.
"First and third with nobody out, you've got to get through that," Bettis said. "I really appreciate that he left me out there.
"You always want to walk away on top. There were about three pitches that I wish I would have located a little bit better. So there's still some progress to be made."
Bettis was sharp, but so was Anderson, who was also making his final start of the season.
"Anderson did a good job with the fastball-changeup mix," Weiss said. "We had a hard time putting anything together on him."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Triples machine: Rockies first baseman Justin Morneau isn't known for speed, but that may be changing. With one out in the second, Morneau tripled for the third time since his Sept. 4 return from a lengthy absence with a cervical neck strain and concussion. Morneau would make it home on DJ LeMahieu's sacrifice fly to right.
Exploiting the nine-hole: Bettis and Anderson each found themselves in trouble, but escaped by exploiting the opposite pitcher. Anderson intentionally walked Dustin Garneau to load the bases in the fourth, before striking out Bettis to end the inning. Earlier in the game, Peralta had tripled with one out in the second. After Saltalamacchia lined to first base, Bettis found trouble by walking Jake Lamb and Chris Owings, but he got Anderson to ground out to end the frame.
Speed to burn: Rookie Socrates Brito used his speed to get the D-backs on the board in the fifth. Brito, batting leadoff in place of Ender Inciarte (shin), turned a one-out single to right-center into a double and moved to third on a passed ball. Brito easily scored on Gosselin's sacrifice fly to deep center field.
Bounce-back effort: The last time Hessler faced the Rockies, on Sept. 2, he gave up a go-ahead grand slam to fellow lefty Carlos Gonzalez. Hessler fared better Wednesday, when he struck out Morneau in a lefty-lefty matchup with the go-ahead runner on base in the sixth. Overall, the five D-backs relievers held the Rockies to one hit in 3 2/3 innings.
"You see who you really are out there as a pitcher. Everybody, when you have your good stuff, you can do well. So when you don't have your best stuff and can still get through five innings, six innings, it just tells you, you can do this for a while." -- Anderson
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Nolan Arenado's fourth-inning double was his 40th of the season, which made him the third third baseman in history to record at least 40 home runs, 40 doubles and 120 RBIs in a single season. The others were the Tigers' Miguel Cabrera in 2012 (40, 44 and 139) and the Blue Jays' Josh Donaldson this year (41, 41 and 123). Previous Rockies to achieve the feat were Ellis Burks (1996), Larry Walker ('97) and Todd Helton (2000 and '01).
Rockies: Righty David Hale (5-5, 6.01 ERA), who held the Dodgers to one run in five innings in his last start, will attempt to finish his season strong against the D-backs on Thursday at 7:40 p.m. MT.
D-backs: Patrick Corbin will make the final start of his comeback season from Tommy John surgery, when he takes the hill at 6:40 p.m. MST. Corbin is 2-0 against the Rockies this season and had a 2.48 ERA in five September starts.
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