Published May 29, 2012
DENVER – Dexter Fowler capped a big day at the plate with a game-ending triple off Brett Myers with one out in the 10th inning Monday night, giving the Colorado Rockies a 7-6 win and a sweep of their doubleheader with the Houston Astros.
The Rockies won the opener 9-7.
Fowler lined a pitch past a diving first baseman Carlos Lee and the ball ended up in the right field corner as Michael Cuddyer, who singled, scored from first.
After Cuddyer slid across home plate, Fowler ripped off his helmet and threw it across the field in excitement.
Josh Roenicke (1-0) pitched a scoreless 10th for the win. Myers fell to 0-2.
The Rockies had entered the day 6-18 in May.
Fowler batted leadoff for the first time all season and he reached base nine times in 11 trips to the plate Monday with a sacrifice bunt accounting for one of the times he didn't.
The Astros threw out runners at the plate in the seventh and eighth innings to preserve the 6-6 deadlock in the nightcap, and they escaped a bases-loaded jam in the eighth when Fernando Rodriguez, who took the loss in the opener, got Troy Tulowitzki to fly out to center.
But they couldn't escape the sweep, thanks to Fowler and a Rockies bullpen that allowed just one run in eight innings Monday.
In the opener of the Astros' first doubleheader since 2006, struggling right-hander Jeremy Guthrie finally found a way to contribute to a Rockies victory. Pinch-running for Jason Giambi in the eighth, he scored the go-ahead run in Colorado's 9-7 victory.
Fowler collected three hits and scored twice in the opener, then did more damage in the nightcap, leading off the game with a homer, singling and scoring in the third and drawing a two-out, full-count, bases-loaded walk in the fourth that was followed by Marco Scutaro's bases-clearing double.
Coming into the Memorial Day twin-bill, Fowler had just two hits over his previous eight games, with both hits being pinch-hit home runs.
Under baseball's new rules, a team is allowed to add a 26th player for a doubleheader, and the Astros called up Lyles from Triple-A Oklahoma City to start the nightcap. He promptly gave up a homer to Fowler.
After Brian Bogusevic's two-run homer off Alex White gave the Astros a 2-1 lead in the top of the third, Fowler bunted his way aboard in the bottom half of the inning and went all the way to third on third baseman Matt Downs' throwing error. He scored on Carlos Gonzalez's groundout.
Houston scored twice more in the fourth, when Chris Snyder hit a solo homer, his third, and Jordan Schafer added an RBI single, but the Rockies responded with four runs in the bottom half.
Snyder's run-scoring single in the fifth made it 6-5, and Justin Maxwell's pinch-hit homer in the sixth tied it and chased White, who allowed six runs on 10 hits in five-plus innings.
Lyles gave up six runs, four earned, on six hits in five innings.
In the opener, it was Guthrie's right foot and not his right arm that made the difference.
With the score tied at 7, Astros shortstop Jed Lowrie fielded Fowler's two-out roller and flipped to second baseman Jose Altuve, who wasn't expecting the throw and didn't cover the bag. Guthrie wasn't expecting the flip either, so he went into second standing up and the ball hit his right foot and bounced into no-man's land in center field, and the runners moved up.
Fowler was credited with a single and Lowrie got an error, setting the stage for Jordan Pacheco, who blooped a single to center off Fernando Rodriguez (1-5), scoring both runners.
Matt Belisle (2-2) earned the win with a scoreless inning of relief, and Rafael Betancourt pitched a perfect ninth for his ninth save in 10 tries. This was the Rockies' second doubleheader of the season. They split with Pittsburgh on April 25.
Astros ace Wandy Rodriguez was hit hard in the opener, allowing seven runs, four earned, and 10 hits in five innings. He gave up six extra-base hits, including four in the first inning, and left trailing 7-6.
Schafer took him off the hook in the seventh when he beat out an infield single off Adam Ottavino, stole second on a bang-bang play that drew Rockies manager Jim Tracy onto the field to discuss the safe call with second base umpire Marty Foster, and then raced home on Altuve's single to tie it at 7.
Ottavino replaced Juan Nicasio, who gave up five runs and nine hits over six innings.
NOTES: The combined attendance was 70,332. ... The Astros hadn't played a doubleheader since April 13, 2006, at San Francisco. ... These teams played one other doubleheader, a sweep by Colorado on Set. 14, 1993, at Mile High Stadium in Denver. ... After taking Tuesday off, the series continues Wednesday with LHP Christian Friedrich (2-1) on the mound for Colorado and RHP Lucas Harrell (4-3) getting the start for Houston.