Published July 28, 2012
DENVER – Moments after another defeat for Colorado, second baseman Marco Scutaro learned he was the latest player headed out of town.
The Rockies traded Scutaro and cash to the NL West-leading San Francisco Giants for minor league infielder Charlie Culberson following a 3-0 loss to streaking Cincinnati on Friday night.
"It's a business and I get to go to a first-place team," Scutaro said. "It's kind of nice because all the work you put in in the offseason is to try and get a chance to play in the playoffs. I think I'm going to have that kind of opportunity with that team."
It was the second significant deal the Rockies have completed leading up to Tuesday's trade deadline. Last Friday, they sent Jeremy Guthrie to the Kansas City Royals for Jonathan Sanchez in a swap of struggling pitchers.
The 36-year-old Scutaro, obtained from Boston in the offseason, can become a free agent after the World Series and has about $2 million remaining on his $6 million contract. He went 1 for 4 with a double Friday for a Colorado lineup that was shut down by Bronson Arroyo and two relievers.
"I really liked it here. Unfortunately, the season didn't go the way we expected in the beginning," Scutaro said.
The Rockies opened a nine-game homestand, their longest of the second half, but were blanked for the sixth time overall and fourth at Coors Field. At 37-61, they have the second-worst record in the National League and are 4-9 since the All-Star break.
"It's unfortunate we couldn't do anything offensively tonight, because personally I feel we pitched well enough to win," manager Jim Tracy said. "You've got to give credit to Bronson Arroyo. He pitched really, really well."
Arroyo went 6 2-3 innings and Ryan Ludwick scored twice to help Cincinnati win its eighth straight.
Ludwick, Scott Rolen and Ryan Hanigan had two hits apiece for the Reds, who have won 12 of 14 since the All-Star break and tied Washington for the best record in the National League.
Coming into the game, Arroyo was 0-2 with an 8.84 ERA in three starts at Coors Field.
"The game plan here is always tough for me because I throw so many breaking balls and it's hard to throw a sharp one in this atmosphere," Arroyo said. "I've had a hard time pitching here, and getting off to a good start I knew was going to be a huge key. We got lucky a little bit where things were kind of rolling my way."
Arroyo (6-6) retired his first 11 batters before Carlos Gonzalez singled with two outs in the fourth. The right-hander started tiring as the game went into the seventh and let the bench know he was nearly out of gas.
Arroyo left with two on, but Alfredo Simon retired pinch-hitter Eric Young Jr. to end the threat.
"I had the shakes a little bit," Arroyo said. "I didn't want them to be surprised because my pitch count was so low and I wanted to let them know I felt like I had thrown 90-something pitches instead of the 70 I had thrown."
Arroyo allowed six hits and struck out three. It was the first time this season he won back-to-back starts.
"He just had a real good mix of pitches," Tracy said. "He pitched just enough with his fastball. In many instances, he pitched around his fastball and used his slider and changeup and curveball. He did a very good job going back and forth with us."
Aroldis Chapman worked the ninth for his 20th save in 24 chances.
Gonzalez and Jordan Pacheco each had two hits for the Rockies, who have lost seven of nine.
The Reds broke up a scoreless game when they got to Rockies starter Drew Pomeranz in the fourth. Brandon Phillips led off with a single and moved to second on a fly to right. Ludwick followed with a double down the left-field line to score Phillips.
Rolen singled off Pomeranz's right leg to put runners at the corners and Todd Frazier drove home Ludwick with a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.
The Rockies threatened in the fifth when Pacheco doubled with one out to put runners at second and third, but Arroyo struck out Josh Rutledge and got Pomeranz on a grounder to end the inning.
The Reds added another run in the sixth. Ludwick walked with one out and Rolen singled to end Pomeranz's night. Adam Ottavino came on and threw two wild pitches that allowed Ludwick to score, making it 3-0.
Pomeranz (1-6) gave up three runs and seven hits in 5 1-3 innings. He struck out five and walked one.
NOTES: Culberson was playing for Triple-A Fresno. ... On their off day Thursday, the Rockies visited victims of the Aurora theater shooting at a local hospital. ... The Rockies activated 1B Todd Helton from the 15-day DL and optioned RHP Edwar Cabrera to Triple-A Colorado Springs. ... The Reds will send RHP Johnny Cueto (12-5) to the mound against Christian Friedrich (5-7) on Saturday.