Rodgers, McMahon go deep, Rockies top Goldschmidt, Cards
DENVER (AP) — Brendan Rodgers and Ryan McMahon hit back-to-back home runs in a six-run seventh inning, and the Colorado Rockies held off the St. Louis Cardinals 8-6 on Thursday to secure their first series win since the All-Star break.
The Rockies overcame three more hits from Paul Goldschmidt, including his 27th home run, to improve to 7-14 since July 22.
Former Rockies slugger Nolan Arenado hit his 24th home run to extend his hitting streak to nine games, but struck out looking with two on in the ninth to end it for the Cardinals. They lost for the second time in three tries since winning seven straight.
Jordan Hicks (3-6) walked two with one out in the seventh and was relieved by Génesis Cabrera. Charlie Blackmon pulled a grounder through the right side to snap a 2-all tie and José Iglesias followed with an RBI single up the middle.
Rodgers then belted a first-pitch changeup an estimated 407 feet. The three-run homer made him 10 for 19 over his past four games. McMahon’s solo shot to right ended the day for Cabrera, who threw just 13 pitches.
Goldschmidt, who improved his NL-leading batting average to .332, hit a two-run homer and Arenado followed with a solo shot in the eighth off Alex Colomé, but St. Louis got no closer. The Cardinals, who also got a solo home run from Nolan Gorman, saw their lead over Milwaukee in the NL Central sliced to a half-game ahead of their three-game series in St. Louis starting Friday.
Brian Serven added a two-run double and Lucas Gilbreath (1-0) pitched a perfect seventh for Colorado. Daniel Bard loaded the bases with one out in the ninth, but got Goldschmidt to ground into an RBI forceout before fanning Arenado with a slider for his 24th save in 26 chances.
Cardinals starter Dakota Hudson allowed four hits and four walks in five innings, while Rockies right-hander Germán Márquez worked around eight hits and struck out six. He got out of a jam in his sixth and final inning when he fanned Paul DeJong and Tyler O’Neil with runners on second and third.
Cardinals: RHP Jack Flaherty (shoulder) was to start the opener of a doubleheader for Triple-A Memphis after his rehab start Wednesday was rained out.
Rockies: CF Yonathan Daza made a running catch of Arenado’s fly to right center in the first, then tumbled to the ground on his left shoulder. Daza was assisted off the field through the Rockies’ bullpen and didn’t return with what the team called a shoulder sprain. ... C Elias Díaz (hand) was awaiting MRI results after being injured on a swing Wednesday. X-rays after the game were negative.
After homering and collecting four hits Wednesday while playing first base, St. Louis’ Albert Pujols had the day off in his last appearance at Coors Field. Pujols began his major league career in Denver on April 2, 2001, going 1 for 3.
The retiring Pujols’ next game will be his 3,035th and move him past Ty Cobb for fifth in major league history.
A day after tripling twice, Lars Nootbaar led off with a double in his first game atop the Cardinals’ order. Tyler O’Neill started in center field ahead of struggling Dylan Carlson.
Cardinals: LHP Jordan Montgomery (4-3, 3.53 ERA) starts Friday night against Milwaukee LHP Eric Lauer (8-3, 3.59).
Rockies: RHP Antonio Senzatela (3-6, 4.68) starts Friday night at Coors Field against Arizona RHP Zach Davies (2-4, 4.03) as Colorado seeks consecutive wins for the first time since July 15-16.
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