Colvin, Rockies climb past Strasburg, Nats

July 06, 2012

WASHINGTON (AP) — Tyler Colvin homered twice off Stephen Strasburg to back a masterful pitching performance by Drew Pomeranz and lead the Colorado Rockies past Washington 5-1 Friday night, ending the Nationals’ four-game winning streak.

Colvin hit a solo shot in the second inning and a two-run drive in the fourth to become the first player to hit two home runs against Strasburg in the same game. Colvin also singled in the sixth off Strasburg and hit a fly ball to the warning track against Ryan Mattheus in the eighth.

Over his past five games, Colvin is 7 for 16 with five homers and 10 RBIs. Dexter Fowler also connected for the Rockies, who had scored only nine runs in their previous five games.

Strasburg (9-4) allowed three runs, two earned, and eight hits in six innings. The All-Star struck out six and walked one, but lost a third straight start for the first time in his three-year career.

In his last start, Strasburg lasted only three innings before being removed because of heat-related issues in Atlanta. In this one, his fastball reached 98 mph in 96-degree temperatures, and Colvin was more of hindrance than the weather.

Strasburg was outdone by pitcher on a last-place team making his 11th career start and in search of his third major league win.

Pomeranz (1-3) gave up only one hit over 6 1-3 scoreless innings — a bloop to center by Bryce Harper in the fourth. The left-hander walked two and struck out six against the team with the best record in the NL and an offense that scored 32 runs in its previous four games.

It was Pomeranz’s second start since being recalled from the minors. In his previous outing, he gave one run, none earned, and two hits over six innings in a 2-0 loss to San Diego.

Washington was blanked through eight innings and finished with five hits. In the ninth, after Ryan Zimmerman hit a solo homer off Rex Brothers and the Nationals got two runners on base, Rafael Betancourt got three outs for his 14th save.

Colvin put the Rockies up 1-0 in the second inning with a second-chance home run. After Washington catcher Jesus Flores dropped a foul popup for an error on Strasburg’s first pitch to Colvin, the slugger drove an 0-2 pitch into the second level of seats in right field.

With a runner on second in the Colorado fourth, Colvin masterfully worked the count from 1-2 to 3-2 before hitting the ninth pitch of the at-bat into the front row of the seats in right-center.

In the fifth, the Rockies got runners on the corners with one out before Marco Scutaro bounced into a 6-4-3 double play. One inning later, Colorado’s Wil Nieves hit into a double play with the bases loaded and one out.

Fowler made it 4-0 in the seventh with his 11th home run, a drive off Tom Gorzelanny, and Michael Cuddyer added a sacrifice fly in the eighth.

NOTES: New Washington Capitals coach Adam Oates threw out the ceremonial first pitch. ... Nationals LHP Gio Gonzalez strives for his 12th win Saturday. The Rockies will counter with Jeff Francis, who’s seeking to win a third straight start. ... Zimmerman has five HRs in his last 12 games.

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