CINCINNATI (AP) — Troy Tulowitzki hit a two-run homer, Esmil Rogers pitched just well enough for six innings and the Colorado Rockies sent the Cincinnati Reds to their fifth loss in six games with a 3-2 win on Tuesday night.
Dexter Fowler had two of Colorado’s five hits and drove in the go-ahead run for the Rockies, who have won three out of their last four games.
Lack of clutch hitting continued to plague the Reds, who were 0 for 10 with runners in scoring position and left Dontrelle Willis still looking for his first win in six starts since being called up from Triple-A on July 10.
Willis (0-2) lowered his ERA from 3.41 to 3.16 and finished with a season-high 10 strikeouts.
Rogers (6-1) allowed eight hits and two runs with six strikeouts and two walks.
Matt Reynolds, Josh Roenicke and Rex Brothers combined for two scoreless innings of relief before Rafael Betancourt pitched the ninth for his first save of the season and 20th of his career.
Willis, who went into the game with Cincinnati’s longest active hitting streak at five games, followed Ramon Hernandez’s second-inning leadoff single with a one-out triple into the corner in right. The triple was the sixth of Willis’s career and first since he hit three for Florida in 2007.
Willis retired the first 10 batters before Fowler lined a single up the middle in the fourth. Carlos Gonzalez forced Fowler at second, but Tulowitzki lined a 0-1 pitch 351 feet into the first row of the seats in left for his 22nd homer and a 2-1 Colorado lead.
The Reds tied it in the fourth on Todd Frazier’s baserunning. He was on second with Dave Sappelt on first and one out when Edgar Renteria hit a sharp one-hopper that Rogers knocked down, picked up and threw to Tulowitzki to force Sappelt at second. Frazier rounded third, drawing a throw behind him from Tulowitzki, and slid across the plate just of third baseman Ty Wigginton’s relay and catcher Chris Iannetta’s tag.
The Rockies regained the lead in the fifth, loading the bases with one out on Wigginton’s single to left, Iannetta’s walk and a bunt single by Rogers. Eric Young Jr. grounded into a forceout at the plate, but Fowler gave Colorado a 3-2 lead with a single to center.
Notes: The Reds placed RHP Logan Ondrusek on the 15-day DL with a strained right forearm on Tuesday, retroactive to Monday, and recalled LHP Travis Wood from Triple-A Louisville. … RHP Mike Leake, Cincinnati’s starter against Colorado on Wednesday, has a 2.55 ERA in four starts since the All-Star break, but is only 1-3. … Colorado still had not announced Wednesday’s starting pitcher, but it is expected to be veteran RHP Kevin Millwood, who unofficially joined the team Monday after pitching in the Boston and Yankee farm systems this season. He is a combined 7-2 with a 4.32 ERA in 16 starts. … Millwood is starting in place of RHP Juan Nicasio, who is recovering from surgery to repair a broken bone in his neck after getting hit by a batted ball on Friday. “He had another great day today,” manager Jim Tracy said. “He’s up and moving around and eating. He’s definitely moving in the direction you want to see him.”
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)