(Sports Network) - The San Francisco Giants hope to avoid a sixth straight loss this evening, as they kick off an 11-game road trip with the first of four games against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.
The Giants managed to beat the Boston Red Sox in the opener of their most recent six-game homestand, but proceeded to drop the next five games, culminating with a three-game sweep at the hands of heated rival, theLos Angeles Dodgers.
The road, though, hasn't been friendly to the Giants, as they have dropped 12 of 18 away from AT&T Park.
San Francisco has totaled just nine runs over the course of the slide and was defeated 8-2 on Wednesday.Aaron Rowand went 3-for-4 and hit a solo homer in defeat for the Giants, while Jonathan Sanchez (6-6) absorbed the loss, allowing five runs -- four earned -- on six hits in five frames.
The Giants, thanks to an abysmal 8-17 mark within the National League West, have fallen to fourth place in the division, 5 1/2 games back of first-place San Diego, but just a half-game back of the Rockies.
"Sure it is [disappointing]," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "It's something that can determine your season, is how you play within your division. As tight of a race as I think this will be, ultimately it may come down to how you do against teams in your division and right now we haven't done a good job. ... We're getting shut down by our division opponents."
Hoping to buck that trend tonight will be 20-year-old left-hander Madison Bumgarner, who will be making his second start of the year. The Giants' prized pitching prospect took the loss on Saturday against Boston, allowing four runs and five hits in seven innings.
"It would be a great thing to be here all year," said Bumgarner, who is filling in for the injured Todd Wellemeyer. "Even if it was just for one day, it would still be an awesome experience. I'm just going to try to take it one day at a time, and if they tell me to make the next start, I'll work hard and try to give us a chance to win."
Colorado, meanwhile, was denied a sweep in its series with the Padres on Wednesday, falling 13-3 in the finale at Petco Park.
Jonathan Herrera drove in two runs while Seth Smith added an RBI double for the Rockies, who have dropped three of their last five. Jeff Francis (2-3) was beat up for eight runs on seven hits with three walks in just three-plus innings of work.
"Coming in here and winning a series I'm certainly not disappointed," said Colorado manager Jim Tracy. "But what's disappointing is the fact that we didn't put ourselves in a position to sweep the series."
Getting the call for the Rockies tonight will be righty Aaron Cook, who is winless in his last five starts. Cook lost in Anaheim on Saturday, as the Angels hit him for four runs (three earned) in eight innings, dropping him to 2-5 to go along with a 4.69 ERA.
Cook lost to the Giants the last time he faced them and is 7-10 lifetime against them with a 4.99 ERA in 26 games, 21 of which have been starts.
Colorado has split its six matchups with the Giants this season, but has dropped eight of the last 12 overall meetings.