DENVER (AP) – If this bad stretch wasn’t bad enough, the Colorado Rockies could be losing one of their top players.
Carlos Gonzalez was removed late in a 4-2 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night after irritating his left index finger again.
The All-Star outfielder just might be headed for the disabled list to give a finger that’s nagged him most of the season a chance to heal. Because right now, he said, even gripping a bat is a difficult task. His average dipped to .255 after going 0-for-2.
“I really don’t know what to do at this point,” said Gonzalez, who left in the sixth inning. “It’s just really hard. It’s even harder for me to come out of the game over and over again.”
Rockies manager Walt Weiss feels the same way.
“We’re at a point where we’ve got to make a decision on this and see what’s best for him and what’s best for our club,” Weiss said.
The Rockies opened a 10-game homestand with their fifth straight loss. The best-hitting team in baseball just finished a dismal road swing in which it went 2-7 and averaged less than three runs a game.
Colorado struggled against rookie Chase Anderson (4-0), who mixed a fastball that barely crept into the 90s with a sharp curve and a changeup.
Anderson was hardly intimidated by hitter friendly Coors Field or the Rockies’ explosive offense. He didn’t overpower the Rockies so much as keep them guessing, throwing six effective innings in his longest outing since he was recalled from Reno on May 6. He becomes the fifth rookie since 1998 to win his opening four starts.
The right-handed Anderson allowed four hits and one run – a homer by D.J. LeMahieu – to help the Diamondbacks stop a three-game skid.
“I tried to stick with my game plan, pitch off that,” Anderson said. “If you try to pitch to the park, sometimes you’re not very successful.”
Jorge De La Rosa (6-4) settled down after a shaky start, giving up three runs in seven innings. The hard-throwing lefty didn’t have a strikeout for the first time this season, and his six-game winning streak came to an end.
“I didn’t have my best stuff,” De La Rosa said. “I just kept trying to work my way through and go as far as I can. I think I did a good job.”
With the team scuffling, Weiss will shake up his rotation, sending Franklin Morales to the bullpen and bringing up prized prospect Eddie Butler from Double-A Tulsa for a start on Friday.
“I think it’d be a shot in the arm for us,” Weiss said. “He’s a talented kid. I’ve heard a lot about him and been anticipating his arrival at the big league.
“He’s a young kid with a big arm. There’s a lot of on-the-job training to be done, for anybody.”
The Diamondbacks finally gave their slugging first baseman Paul Goldschmidt a night off.
No matter, Evans was there to still provide some punch. The solo shot by Evans in the fourth was his first homer since Sept. 3, 2011, when he was with the New York Mets. He wasn’t sure if a moment like this would ever arrive again, especially after missing most of 2012 with a broken hand and not having a job last season until the Diamondbacks called a few days before the season – with only a spot open at Double-A Mobile.
The veteran still jumped at the chance.
“You start to question,” said Evans, who was recalled from Triple-A Reno last week. “It’s not easy to get here. … This is definitely satisfying.”
Evans was in the lineup only because manager Kirk Gibson decided this was a good opportunity to give Goldschmidt his first day off of the season after 59 straight games, one shy of the club record of 60 set by Travis Lee in 1998.
Maybe another break for Goldschmidt on Wednesday?
“Yeah, I wouldn’t count on that,” Evans said.
NOTES: Rockies SS Troy Tulowitzki hit his 15th homer of the season, a solo shot in the ninth. … The umpires overturned a call at the plate in the second that kept the game scoreless. Rockies C Wilin Rosario was originally ruled safe, but after a challenge the call was reversed when replays showed Arizona C Miguel Montero tagged Rosario on the back before he touched home.
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