Colorado Rockies first baseman Todd Helton hasn't been the feared power hitter he once was for many years now, but even at 38 years old he can still hit the long ball. He picked up career home run No. 350 in Saturday's 9-4 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers.
This latest loss was, as many say far too often, a tale of two games. If only the last four innings with the Brewers at the plate could have gone as the first four did.
Drew Pomeranz, making his second start of the season, was perfect through the first four innings -- and then the bottom dropped out. The Rockies held a 1-0 lead thanks to Troy Tulowitzki's fourth inning home run (2), but the fifth inning saw Aramis Ramirez draw a walk to start the inning. A Corey Hart ground-rule double moved Ramirez over to third base. But it was a passed ball on catcher Wilin Rosario that allowed Ramirez to tie the game. Alex Gonzalez followed with a double to score Hart for the 2-1 lead.
That ended Pomeranz as Eric Young Jr. pinch hit for him to start the top of the sixth inning. Young walked, stole second and advanced to third on a Marco Scutaro bunt single. Dexter Fowler hit into a fielder's choice right after that, plating Young. A couple of batters later, Troy Tulowitzki wound up driving in Carlos Gonzalez for the 3-2 lead.
Esmil Rogers relieved Pomeranz and subsequently allowed a home run to Ryan Braun at the start of the inning, surrendering the lead. More trouble awaited him in the seventh inning with Rickie Weeks tripling in the go-ahead run and Carlos Gomez following with an RBI single. Edgmer Escalona relieved Rogers after that, only to allow a Ryan Braun RBI triple and then an Alex Gonzalez three-run home run for the 9-3 lead.
Todd Helton's home run to start the ninth inning was the last run of the game. It ended with Esmil Rogers taking the loss and Jose Veras nabbing the win.
The Rockies (7-7, 2-3 away) play the rubber game on Sunday afternoon at 12:10 p.m. MT. Jeremy Guthrie and Yovani Gallardo are the expected starters.