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Gonzalez powers Rockies to 7-3 win over Giants

DENVER (AP) — Carlos Gonzalez hit an early two-run homer and Aaron Cook threw 6 1-3 sharp innings, lifting the Colorado Rockies to a 7-3 victory over the reeling San Francisco Giants on Thursday night.

Dexter Fowler provided a spark on the basepaths, stealing two bases and scoring twice as the Rockies won for the third time in four games.

The Giants are traveling in an opposite direction, their skid reaching a season-high six games.

Buster Posey had a solo homer as he took the place of Bengie Molina in the lineup after the veteran catcher was dealt to the Texas Rangers earlier in the day for reliever Chris Ray and a minor-league pitcher.

Cook (3-5) allowed three runs and seven hits to win for the first time since May 29. He has thrived at Coors Field this season, posting a 2.64 ERA in friendly confines as opposed to 6.70 on the road.

The sinkerball specialist pitched into the seventh, striking out counterpart Madison Bumgarner before being pulled for reliever Matt Belisle.

Rafael Betancourt pitched the eighth and Huston Street finished in a nonsave opportunity.

Bumgarner (0-2) lasted seven innings in his second start of the season, giving up four runs and nine hits.

The Rockies broke open a one-run game in the eighth by scoring three times. Pinch-hitter Jason Giambi had a run-scoring single while Miguel Olivo played a role in the other two runs. Olivo brought in one with a triple and then scored the other when he knocked the ball out of the glove of Posey on Clint Barmes' infield chopper.

Barmes had a run-scoring, broken-bat bloop single to center in the fourth, while Melvin Mora scored Fowler on a groundout in the fifth.

Fowler just recently returned to the team after spending a month with Triple-A Colorado Springs to hone his mechanics at the plate. He finished 3 for 5 with a triple.

The Giants moved Aaron Rowand back into the leadoff spot Wednesday, a move that paid dividends against Colorado.

With the bases loaded and two outs in the second, Rowand crushed a curveball to left that just curled foul.

No matter, he followed that with a two-run single through the middle, tying the game at 2 apiece.

A change in the order has also benefited Gonzalez, who hit a two-run homer in the first inning. He has 11 RBIs in 15 games hitting out of the three spot.

Gonzalez has been feasting on NL West pitchers this season, hitting nine of his 13 homers against divisional hurlers. He homered to straightaway center on a fastball from Bumgarner.

With Molina gone, Eli Whiteside and Posey will split the catching duties, an opportunity Posey relishes.

"You have to play to show what you can do. You don't know unless you play," Posey said. "I'm going to get more of an opportunity now."

NOTES: Giants manager Bruce Bochy gave 2B Freddy Sanchez the night off. ... Rockies manager Jim Tracy said the demotion of LHP Franklin Morales to the Sky Sox gives the reliever a chance to rediscover his fastball command. ... The Giants began their longest road trip of the season Thursday, 11 games in three cities. ... Ray was scheduled to arrive in Denver around game time. He didn't make an appearance Thursday for his new team.