WASHINGTON (AP) – Michael Cuddyer homered in his first at-bat to extend the major league’s longest hitting streak this season to 21 games – and the Colorado Rockies hung on to beat the Washington Nationals 7-6 Sunday.
Cuddyer went 3 for 4 with four RBIs to break a tie with St. Louis Cardinals third baseman David Freese for the year’s top streak, and the Rockies right fielder is now just two games shy of matching the franchise’s best run. Dante Bichette, now the team’s hitting coach, had hits in 23 consecutive games in 1995.
Cuddyer also extended his Colorado record for consecutive games reaching base to 40.
“It’s tough to do, but it’s typical of Cuddy,” Rockies manager Walt Weiss said before the game. “He’s just that guy that’s steady.”
Cuddyer had an RBI single in Colorado’s three-run third inning and a two-run single in a three-run fourth, an inning Nolan Arenado led off with a home run.
That gave Jorge De La Rosa (8-4) a 7-0 cushion. He allowed seven hits in six innings, trading both his earned runs for outs in the bottom of the fourth.
Washington third baseman Ryan Zimmerman had an RBI infield single in the eighth inning, and a second run scored on the play when Rockies short stop Josh Rutledge booted the ball. Jhonatan Solano pinch hit and lined a two-out, two-run double to centerfield.
But Ian Desmond struck out, and the Nationals’ four-run eighth left them still a run short.
In his shortest start this year aside from a May outing he left early due to lower-back spasms, Ross Detwiler (2-6) allowed a season-high seven earned runs – three more than any other game.
Washington right fielder Jayson Werth started after missing Saturday’s game with flu-like symptoms, but he left in the fourth inning following his second hit. Werth stretched his left leg on first base before gesturing to the dugout for a pinch runner.
NOTES: Washington OF Bryce Harper took full on-field batting practice for the first time since going on the disabled list June 1 (left knee bursitis). With fans arriving early to Nationals Park to receive Harper bobbleheads, he sent multiple pitches over the outfield wall. Before the game, Harper tweeted, “Well that felt unreal! (hash)BP (hash)Lovethefans.” … De La Rosa is now and 5-0 with a 1.41 ERA in day games this season. … Arenado has missed only one game since the Rockies called him up from Triple-A Colorado Springs in late April, and Weiss said it’s difficult to find days off for the rookie. “He’s wound too tight,” Weiss said. “He doesn’t like to sit over here for nine innings.” … Weiss said he planned days in advance to give Todd Helton both Saturday and Sunday off. The Rockies don’t play Monday, so the first baseman will get three straight days of rest. … Colorado RHP Juan Nicasio (4-3, 4.78) will face Boston Red Sox RHP Ryan Dempster (4-8, 4.23) on Tuesday. … Nationals LHP Gio Gonzalez (3-3, 3.34) will face Arizona Diamondbacks RHP Trevor Cahill (3-8, 3.92) on Tuesday. … Rapper Wale, a D.C. native, threw out the ceremonial first pitch.
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