Published April 27, 2010
DENVER (AP) — Kelly Johnson homered to lead off the 10th inning and the Arizona Diamondbacks, after blowing a six-run lead and then falling behind by five, rallied past the Colorado Rockies 12-11 Wednesday.
Johnson sent a drive from Franklin Morales (0-2) over the center-field wall. His eighth homer of the season capped a seesaw game that saw abbreviated outings by both starters, a dozen extra-base hits and the ejection of Arizona manager A.J. Hinch.
Bob Howry (1-0) pitched two scoreless innings and Juan Gutierrez got three outs for his first save in two chances.
Chris Young's three-homer highlighted a big first inning that put Arizona ahead 6-0. Young matched a career high with five RBIs.
Troy Tulowitzki's two-run double helped Colorado score six times in the third for a 7-6 lead, and the Rockies added four more in the fourth.
Down 11-6, the Diamondbacks came back. They scored twice in the eighth off reliever Rafael Betancourt to make it 11-all, getting an RBI groundout from Johnson and a run-scoring single by Tony Abreu.
Arizona loaded the bases in the ninth against Morales but failed to score. Mark Reynolds tried to come home on John Hester's grounder, was forced out at the plate. Hinch argued to no avail that third baseman Ian Stewart's throw pulled catcher Miguel Olivo's foot off the plate, and was tossed by umpire Marvin Hudson.
In the shortest outing of his career, Colorado starter Greg Smith was chased after the first inning.
But the Diamondbacks couldn't hold the lead. Carlos Gonzalez led off the second with his third home run of the season and the Rockies moved in front in the third. Arizona starter Kris Benson faced three batters in the inning, allowing successive singles to Eric Young and Dexter Fowler and walking Todd Helton before leaving because of soreness in his right shoulder.
Tulowitzki greeted reliever Leo Rosales with his double and Gonzalez was awarded a sacrifice fly on a popup just beyond first as Helton scored when Adam LaRoche couldn't get the throw to the plate in time after dropping the ball transferring it from his glove to his hand.
The Rockies made it 11-6 in the fourth on Fowler's first home run of the season, a two-run single by Mora and Eric Young's bases-loaded walk off Esmerling Vasquez.
Belisle tired near the end of his three-inning relief stint — his longest outing this season — giving up consecutive doubles to Abreu and Justin Upton and walking Reynolds on four pitches starting the fifth before giving way to Matt Daley.
Young delivered a two-run single, pulling the Diamondbacks within two runs. Fowler helped the Rockies escape without further damage when he made a diving catch of pinch-hitter Gerardo Parra's sinking line drive to center.
NOTES: Parra was out of the starting lineup. Hinch said it was because the Diamondbacks faced a left-handed starter, because of a soreness from taking a foul tip off his left middle finger Sunday against Philadelphia. ... Hinch drew his second ejection. He also was tossed for arguing an April 23 call against Philadelphia. ... Gonzalez has nine RBIs in his last three games. ... Smith's shortest previous outing was 3 2-3 innings on July 18, 2008, at Yankees Stadium while with Oakland.