Rookies help Rockies defeat Reds to start homestand
DENVER -- A pair of rookies helped the Colorado Rockies open a crucial homestand with a 5-3 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Monday night.
Rockies starter Jeff Hoffman (5-1) gave up three runs and four hits, two of them solo homers, in a career-high-tying seven innings. Hoffman faced just one batter with a runner in scoring position in his 90-pitch outing that included three walks and four strikeouts.
Raimel Tapia finished a single shy of the cycle. He tripled and scored in the second, doubled in the third and hit his second homer of the season in the sixth to put the Rockies ahead 4-3. Tapia led off the eighth against Blake Wood and struck out on three pitches.
The win was just the second in 12 games for the Rockies, who are trying to regroup after concluding a 1-8 road trip Sunday. They head into the All-Star break with a seven-game homestand against the Reds and Chicago White Sox, both last-place teams.
Charlie Blackmon also homered for the Rockies, who hit just four home runs and batted .211 on their nine-game trip while their starters went 1-5 with a 6.41 ERA.
The Reds have lost 15 of their past 17 road games and are 12-27 on the road this season.
Nolan Arenado's sacrifice fly gave the Rockies a 5-3 lead in the seventh. Blackmon led off with a walk, stole second and moved to third on DJ LeMahieu's hard shot that second baseman Scooter Gennett knocked down.
The Reds forged a short-lived tie at 3 on back-to-back homers by Gennett and Joey Votto to open the sixth before Tapia led off the bottom of the inning with a homer.
With two outs in the inning, Hoffman singled. His double in the third was his first career extra-base hit and netted his first RBI. His single finished Reds starter Luis Castillo (0-1), who gave up nine hits and four runs in 5 2/3 innings with one walk and eight strikeouts. It was his third career start.
Tony Cingrani relieved Castillo and promptly picked Hoffman off first base.
Gennett walloped a 1-0 changeup an estimated 452 feet into the second deck in right field for his 13th home run.
Votto connected on a 3-0 fastball for his 24th home run that was also his 1,500th career hit. Hoffman held the Reds hitless since yielding singles to the first two batters he faced in the first and had surrendered three homers in 42 1/3 innings entering the game, none in his past four starts covering 21 2/3 innings.
Jake McGee relieved Hoffman in the eighth and gave up a one-out single to Gennett but got the dangerous Votto to ground into an inning-ending double play.
Closer Greg Holland struck out two of the three batters he faced in the ninth and earned his 27th save in 28 opportunities.
Blackmon lofted his 18th homer into the right field stands with two outs in the fourth, putting the Rockies ahead 3-1.
Gennett was unable to cleanly field Carlos Gonzalez's hard-hit potential double-play grounder with one out and runners at the corners in the third, which began with consecutive singles by LeMahieu and Arenado. A run scored on the play, giving the Rockies a 2-1 lead.
Colorado had a chance to do more damage against Castillo after Tapia's ground-rule double put two runners in scoring position, but Trevor Story flied to right.
Hoffman's two-out double in the second tied the game at 1. The hit scored Tapia, who led off with a triple into the right field corner.
The Reds scratched out a run in the first. Jose Peraza flared a single into short center, just beyond the reach of second baseman LeMahieu, and scampered to third when Gennett followed with a single. Votto's sacrifice fly scored Peraza.
NOTES: Rockies OF Carlos Gonzalez (right shoulder strain) was reinstated, and 1B/OF Ian Desmond (right calf strain) was placed on the 10-day disabled list. ... Rockies RHP Chad Bettis (cancer) will face hitters for the first time Tuesday as he continues to move toward a minor league rehab assignment next week. ... Rockies CF Charlie Blackmon, selected in the fan vote to start in next week's All-Star Game at Miami, will participate in the Home Run Derby on Monday. ... Rockies OF Gerardo Parra (right quadriceps strain) is scheduled to begin a three-game rehab assignment Tuesday with Triple-A Albuquerque. ... Reds RHP Sal Romano will be recalled from Triple-A Louisville to start the series finale Thursday. ... Reds CF Billy Hamilton was not in the lineup after leaving Sunday's game in the eighth inning with lower back stiffness. ... Reds SS Zack Cozart was not in the lineup as part of his planned playing schedule since being reinstated from the DL on Friday following a right quadriceps strain. He pinch-hit and grounded out to end the seventh.