PHILADELPHIA -- Trevor Story saved the Rockies from the ignominy of a no-hitter, but as has been the case recently, he couldn't prevent another loss.Story's RBI double with two outs in the seventh ended Phillies right-hander Vince Velasquez's no-hit bid, and the Rockies fell, 9-3, on Thursday afternoon at Citizens
PHILADELPHIA -- Trevor Story saved the Rockies from the ignominy of a no-hitter, but as has been the case recently, he couldn't prevent another loss.
Story's RBI double with two outs in the seventh ended Phillies right-hander Vince Velasquez's no-hit bid, and the Rockies fell, 9-3, on Thursday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park. Colorado has lost 10 of its past 13 games.
Story's double was part of a two-run rally to cut the deficit to 3-2, but the Phillies scored four runs in the bottom of the inning to ensure taking two of three in the series. Rookie Ryan McMahon, who struggled early but has been solid since his return from Triple-A Albuquerque, was another bright spot. McMahon launched his first Major League homer to straightaway center in the eighth off Hector Neris.
But the Rockies couldn't solve Velasquez.
"[Velazquez] was tough. He was throwing his fastball up in the zone, and he's got some life on it, and that makes it tough to square it up," Story said. "His breaking stuff was really good today. It was just a tough day for us."
"More than anything, the fastball had some life to it, and we chased at the top of the zone probably a little bit too much." Rockies manager Bud Black said.
Story's eighth-inning single ended a perfect-game bid from the Padres' Jordan Lyles on May 15. This time, Velasquez (5-7) faced the minimum until walking Carlos Gonzalez in the seventh while trying to protect a 3-0 lead.
It set up the sizzling Story, who has hit .330 (35-of-106) since he broke up Lyles' perfect-game bid. Story entered the game tied for the National League lead in RBIs. He lined a 2-2 pitch into the left-field corner to deliver his 50th RBI, as he builds a case for All-Star Game votes, and prompted Velasquez's exit at 105 pitches.
"I was just getting ready for the fastball," Story said. "It's a good fastball, but it was a breaking ball, a little up, where I could handle it."
Gerardo Parra, hitting .317 on the road, singled off reliever Tommy Hunter to drive in Story and cut the Phillies' lead to one run.
But Rockies starter German Marquez (4-7), who gave up solo homers to Rhys Hoskins and Nick Williams early on, allowed singles to Andrew Knapp and Scott Kingery, then walked J.P. Crawford to load the bases in the seventh. All inherited runners would score after Black went to the bullpen, closing Marquez's line with six runs in six-plus innings pitched.
"[Marquez] pitched much better than the line indicated," Black said. "A couple of mistakes to Hoskins on the first-pitch fastball -- looked to be down the middle -- and then the breaking ball to Williams didn't quite get where it needed to.
"It's a shame that Marquez got tagged with as many runs that he did. He threw the ball pretty well."
MOMENT THAT MATTERED
Black was forced into tough decisions in the seventh that didn't go the Rockies' way. When Marquez walked Crawford on four pitches to run his pitch count to 112 and load the bases, Black replaced his starter with Jake Mcgee. The lefty reliever coaxed a fly ball from Hernandez, and after a passed ball allowed Knapp to score, McGee allowed a double to Hoskins, who entered with a .277 average and a .426 slugging percentage against lefties.
"This kid, Hoskins, the first time we've seen him live. He wants the ball out away from him so he can get his arms out there and pull the ball," Black said. "Jake missed his spot. The ball was out over the plate."
YOU GOTTA SEE THIS
The seventh-inning rally was cut short after Hunter struck out Ian Desmond with a man at first base.The Rockies didn't feel that should have been a strikeout, and television replays seemed to back that assertion. The pitch that struck out Desmond appeared to skim off his bat, but home-plate umpire Quinn Walcott ruled it a strike, and no one else on the crew saw the deflection. Desmond protested and Black came from the dugout to offer his testimony, but the umpires never gathered. The play is not reviewable by replay.
"When we got [Velasquez] out of the game, we had a little bit of a rough call on the Desmond foul tip. The catcher missed the ball because of the foul tip that wasn't called," Black said.
Rockies righty Chad Bettis (4-1, 4.40 ERA) starts Friday's game, returning to his home state to face the Rangers with his parents in attendance. Lefty Yohander Mendez will be making his second appearance for Texas, with first pitch set for 6:05 p.m MT. Story, from nearby Irving, Texas, will have a large group of supporters in the stands.
Thomas Harding has covered the Rockies since 2000, and for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter and like his Facebook page.