MILWAUKEE (AP) — Juan Nicasio pitched six effective innings for his first victory in almost a year while Wilin Rosario, Michael Cuddyer and Dexter Fowler homered to lift the Colorado Rockies over the Milwaukee Brewers 7-3 on Wednesday night.
The Rockies took two of three under new manager Walt Weiss in the season-opening series at Miller Park.
Nicasio (1-0) allowed two runs and seven hits for his first win since last April 30, when he beat the Los Angeles Dodgers. Winless in the next five starts, he sustained a season-ending knee injury on June 2.
Wily Peralta (0-1) gave up four runs, including Rosario’s two-run homer. Cuddyer hit a two-run homer and Fowler hit a solo homer in the ninth off John Axford.
Rickie Weeks hit a solo home run and Alex Gonzalez added an RBI single off Nicasio. Ryan Braun drove in a run off Chris Volstad.
Rosario picked up right where 2012 ended for him when he hit a two-run homer in the second. The young catcher led all NL rookies with 28 home runs and 71 RBIs last season, which were also franchise rookie records.
Rosario’s nice defensive play saved Nicasio from further trouble in the third.
Weeks hit his first home run of the season. Braun singled, took third on Aramis Ramirez’s double and scored on Alex Gonzalez’s line-drive single. Ramirez rounded third as left fielder Carlos Gonzalez charged the ball, picked it cleanly and fired a strike to Rosario, who took the offline throw, dived at Ramirez as he slid home and tagged him.
The Rockies hit eight home runs in the series.
The last two seasons have been tough on Nicasio. On Aug. 5, 2011, he was hit in the head by a line drive and needed season-ending surgery to repair a neck vertebrae. In 2012, he made his first appearance on the opening day roster and was 2-3 with a 5.28 ERA before getting hurt.
Peralta, who made the opening-day roster after a decent spring, went 5 1-3 innings and allowed four runs on six hits.
Volstad took over for Nicasio and allowed a two-out double to Weeks, who scored on Braun’s double in the seventh.
Cuddyer came on as a pinch-hitter in the seventh and stayed in the game in right.
In the sixth, center fielder Carlos Gomez robbed Gonzalez of homering in his third straight game. Gomez tracked the ball to the outfield padding and then jumped, snagging the ball well above the top of the wall.
Brewers first baseman Gonzalez left the game in a double switch in the sixth. Yuniesky Betancourt made his first career appearance at first and Alfredo Figaro replaced Peralta.
NOTES: LHP Jeff Francis starts against San Diego in the Rockies’ home opener on Friday. Colorado’s last home-opener win came April 9, 2009 against the Padres. … RHP Kyle Lohse makes his Milwaukee debut when the Brewers face the Diamondbacks on Friday. He went 1-0 with a 0.77 ERA against Arizona last season. … Weiss gave Todd Helton and Michael Cuddyer the day off and started Eric Young Jr. in right and Jordan Pacheco at first. Weiss said the move was simply to get them some playing time. … The Rockies will work out Thursday afternoon at Coors Field. The public gets in free with the donation of canned food item. Otherwise, it’s $1.
(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)