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Rockies take advantage of seven Atlanta errors

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Rockies take advantage of seven Atlanta errors

Postby WebHamster » Sun May 02, 2004 10:00 pm

Denver, CO (Sports Network) - Luis Gonzalez had three hits, including a homer, scored three times and drove in three, as the Colorado Rockies took advantage of some shoddy Atlanta defense to take the finale of a three-game series against the Braves, 13-4 at Coors Field.

Todd Helton had pairs of hits, runs scored and RBI, while Vinny Castilla recorded two hits and drove in three, helping Colorado take two of three in the series.

Shawn Estes (4-1) earned the victory for the Rockies, going seven innings and giving up four runs on 10 hits and a walk. He fanned two en route to his second straight victory, and also had a pair of hits and scored twice to help his own cause.

Marcus Giles homered and drove in two and Jesse Garcia had a pair of hits with a run scored for Atlanta, which concluded a 12-game road trip (5-7) with a hideous defensive performance.

The Braves committed seven errors, tying a 31-year-old franchise record. Atlanta third baseman Mark DeRosa committed four of the team's seven gaffes. The Braves as a team had committed only 10 errors total in 23 games coming into this contest.

"It was one of those days," Atlanta manager Bobby Cox said. "We have been playing almost picture-perfect baseball for a month now, we're on the top of the league in fielding and DeRosa has excelled at third base."

Starting pitcher Horacio Ramirez (0-3) gave up eight runs over just 3 1/3 innings and took the loss, but none of the runs were earned. He was touched for five hits and three walks while fanning one.

"I don't need to make any comments about their fielding," Colorado manager Clint Hurdle said. "Estes had a good outing. "Obviously, we had a lot of guys on base that probably shouldn't have been, and we cashed in a few."

Atlanta got on the board first when Giles scored Damon Hollins with a sacrifice fly in the first inning. But it was all Colorado the rest of the way.

In the bottom of the first, the Rockies took a 3-1 lead thanks to some sloppy play by the Braves. Gonzalez led off with a single and was safe at second on a steal attempt, thanks to an error by Garcia at short. Royce Clayton then reached on a sacrifice bunt attempt and Helton got on base because of a throwing error by Giles on a force attempt. Gonzalez scored on the play, and both Clayton and Helton scored when Castilla followed with a double.

"Horacio, without the mistakes, probably doesn't give up any runs in the first inning," Cox said. "It's a whole new ballgame."

Colorado made it 6-1 in the second when Estes singled with one out and took second as Gonzalez reached on a fielding error. Clayton then walked to load the bases, and with Helton at the plate, Ramirez was charged with a balk, scoring Estes and moving everyone up a base. A Helton sacrifice fly and a Castilla single brought in two more runs.

The Rockies took a commanding seven-run lead in the fourth with two more runs. Helton singled with one out and Castilla walked, prompting a pitching change. Antonio Alfonseca came on and struck out Charles Johnson, but Matt Holliday reached on a fielding error by DeRosa to load the bases. Kit Pellow then singled to bring home two runs, with DeRosa tacking on a throwing error for good measure.

Atlanta added a run in the sixth on a leadoff homer by Giles, but the hits just kept coming for Colorado.

Holliday singled with one out in the home sixth, and after Pellow fanned, Denny Hocking walked. Estes then singled to second base and Holliday scored on a throwing error by Giles. Gonzalez followed with his third homer of the year, making it a 12-2 game.

The Braves got two runs back in the seventh, on a Mike Hessman double that drove in Garcia and a Hollins groundout that scored Hessman, but it was far too little, too late.

An RBI single by Aaron Miles in the eighth inning that scored Pellow accounted for the game's final run.

Atlanta tied the team record for errors in a game, set on July 22, 1973, in the second game of a doubleheader against the Philadelphia Phillies. DeRosa tied the franchise record for most individual errors in a game, matching Darrell Evans' four on September 20, 1975.
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