SAN DIEGO (AP) — Tyler Chatwood felt a huge relief after getting through Saturday’s start.
Entering the game, the Colorado pitcher was feeling apprehensive after getting knocked out of his last outing with a thumb injury.
Chatwood rebounded well with six strong innings, but rookie Jedd Gyorko hit a go-ahead homer leading off the eighth inning to give the San Diego Padres a 2-1 win over the Rockies on Saturday night.
Gyorko’s shot off Matt Belisle (5-6) came right after the Rockies tied the game at 1 in the eighth inning on a San Diego error.
Chatwood allowed one run and five hits in his six innings.
Chatwood was making his second start since coming off the DL last Sunday. In his first start back, the right-hander lasted just two innings against Cincinnati when he took a line drive off his right thumb and had to leave the game.
“It felt good to get out there and compete and throw some innings,” Chatwood said. “It’s been awhile since I pitched that long.”
Chatwood had missed 28 games on the DL with right elbow inflammation. In his last start before being placed on the DL, Chatwood lasted just 2 1-3 innings when his elbow forced him from the game.
“I think it took little while to find my rhythm, but I felt like I did,” Chatwood said. “My thumb felt fine. That’s behind me.”
Gyorko’s 17th home run just barely cleared the right field wall as it hit the top padding and avoided the leaping attempt of right fielder Michael Cuddyer.
“I faced him a number of at-bats against him throughout the year,” Gyorko said. “He’s got good command. I know he likes to try get ahead with his fastball away and I just sat on it and put a good swing on it. I wasn’t sure if it was going to get out or not. It was just enough to sneak over.”
Gyorko had been hitless in five at-bats against Belisle this season with two strikeouts.
Luke Gregerson (6-7) got the win and Huston Street picked up his 28th save by getting the final three outs.
Colorado’s Todd Helton hit his 585th double in the seventh inning, tying him for 16th place on the all time list with Rafael Palmeiro.
The Rockies spoiled a strong outing by Padres starter Tyson Ross, who allowed just three hits in seven innings.
“(Ross) has gotten better,” Colorado’s Troy Tulowitzki said. “He kept us off balance. He did a good job and as the game went on, he gained some confidence because he was having success.”
Charlie Blackmon led off the Colorado eighth against Gregerson with a single and was forced out by pinch hitter Ryan Wheeler. Charlie Culberson came in to pinch run and stole second with two outs.
DJ LeMahieu then hit a sharp single to left field. Chris Denorfia fired a one-bounce throw to catcher Nick Hundley, who went to make the tag on Culberson who was going head first.
Hundley applied the tag in time, but Culberson’s slide ripped the glove off Hundley and the ball came out.
Alexi Amarista drove in San Diego’s first run with a bases-loaded, infield single in the first inning.
The Rockies had just two base runners reach second base against Ross. The closest Colorado came to scoring on Ross came after Helton doubled to lead off the seventh.
With one out, Yorvit Torrealba hit a low line drive to right field that Will Venable went for and caught. Venable then doubled Helton off second.
Denorfia and Gyorko had consecutive one-out singles in the San Diego first.
After Jesus Guzman drew a walk with two outs, Amarista drove in a run when his ground ball deflected off the Chatwood’s glove for an infield single.
Notes: Rockies CF Dexter Fowler was held out of the starting lineup after he aggravated a right knee sprain that recently caused him to miss six games. … The Eastlake Little League team from Chula Vista that won the U.S. championship two weeks ago was honored in a pregame ceremony. … Colorado RHP Chad Bettis (0-3, 5.45 ERA) faces San Diego RHP Ian Kennedy (6-9. 4.96) in the season finale between the clubs.
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