Nats, Rockies vie for series win at Coors

The Washington Nationals hope to stay on the winning side of things on Thursday when they close out a three-game series against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.

The Nationals dropped the opener of this set, 8-3, on Tuesday, but rebounded with a 5-1 win the following night. Ross Ohlendorf made a spot start for the Nationals and was strong through six innings. He allowed one run and two hits for the win and three relievers combined for three scoreless innings.

"He used all his pitches and basically went right after them," Washington manager Davey Johnson said of Ohlendorf. "He made his pitches and went deep into the ballgame. Just an outstanding job."

Ian Desmond drove in three runs, while Ryan Zimmerman and Anthony Rendon had an RBI apiece for the Nationals, who have won three of four games and are 1-1 so far on a nine-game road trip.

Washington will also visit Cleveland and Philadelphia on the trek.

Ross Detwiler is slated to take the mound for the Nationals and has been on the disabled list since mid-May because of a back issue. Detwiler hasn't pitched since May 15 at Los Angeles and lasted three innings that day, allowing two runs and six hits.

Detwiler, a left-hander, has lost four of his last five starts and is 2-4 with a 2.76 earned run average in eight outings this season. In three career games (2 starts) against the Rockies, Detwiler is 0-2 with a 6.55 ERA.

Colorado looks to get back on track and entered Wednesday's game having won seven of its previous 10 games.

Rockies starter Jorge De La Rosa gave up three runs on four hits and three walks over 5 1/3 innings to lose for the first time in his last eight starts. It was also his first home loss since Sept. 26, 2010.

"He mixed it up, basically, never really fell into patterns or sequences," Colorado manager Walt Weiss said of Ohlendorf. "He used his fastball well, used his breaking ball off of that. There was some deception."

Carlos Gonzalez delivered an RBI triple for Colorado, which is two games behind Arizona for the NL West lead and 3-3 on a 10-game homestand.

Jeff Francis will take the mound for the Rockies Thursday and is 2-4 with a 6.30 ERA in nine starts. He lost to San Diego on Saturday and gave up four runs in four innings of a 4-2 loss.

Francis was making his first start since May 14 and has allowed at least four runs in five outings this season. The left-hander has made seven career starts against Washington, going 1-2 with a 4.81 ERA.

The Nationals and Rockies are meeting for the first time this season and are scheduled to clash June 20-23 at Nationals Park. Colorado took four of the seven matchups a season ago.