Rockies overcome five Cardinals homers
Todd Helton hit a three-run homer and Larry Walker a two-run
shot for the Rockies, who defeated St. Louis 8-0 in the season
opener on Monday thanks to Hampton's five-hitter over 8 1/3
Neagle (1-0), who allowed seven hits and struck out seven in his
Rockies' debut, settled down after a rough first two innings.
"Unlike other ballparks, you can give up three, four or five
runs early in Coors Field and the games are not over," Neagle
said. "You have to understand that. You can't hang your head.
"I was a little anxious and a little out of whack mechanically
the first two innings, but I settled down and was able to hit all
my spots after that."
Rockies manager Buddy Bell said Neagle "pitched very well. When
a team jumps out 2-0 and we come back 3-2 and they tie it 3-3,
that's when he really got things going. When we really needed it
the most, he pitched the best."
Jim Edmonds and Ray Lankford each hit two homers for the
Cardinals. Both of Edmonds' two-run shots soared into the upper
deck at Coors Field, only the 14th and 15th time homers have been
hit there and the first time a player has done it twice in the same
game. Both of Lankford's homers came off reliever John Wasdin.
Helton and Walker each drove in four runs, and Neifi Perez went
4-for-4 and had three RBI.
Jose Jimenez pitched 1 1/3 innings for his first save of the
In the first three innings, the Rockies pushed across 12 runs,
10 off Andy Benes (0-1). The 12-3 lead eventually shrank to 12-9.
"When you get that far behind early, it's a great sign for the
club to keep playing," Cards manager Tony La Russa said. "We
outhit them, actually (14-13). We had a chance, but that's a
pretty big hole."
Benes said he was "very disappointed. Just an average game from
me and we have a chance of winning. Everything I threw up there
they put the barrel on. Eight runs with two outs that can't
The Cardinals took a 2-0 lead in the first on Edmonds' 482-foot
Colorado countered with three runs in its half on Walker's RBI
triple and RBI doubles by Helton and Todd Hollandsworth.
St. Louis' Edgar Renteria hit a solo homer in the second, but
Colorado scored five in its half, including Helton's three-run
homer that barely cleared the wall down the right-field line and
Jeff Cirillo's solo shot.
The Rockies then chased Benes in the third. With two outs,
Neagle coaxed a four-pitch walk off Benes. Todd Walker singled, and
Perez greeted reliever Chad Hutchinson, who was making his major
league debut, with a two-run double into the right-field corner. Larry Walker followed with a two-run homer.
Lankford led off the sixth with a homer off Wasdin and added a
two-run homer in the seventh. Edmonds' second home run, a
461-footer, came off Gabe White in the eighth.
The Rockies on Wednesday acquired right-handers Juan Acevedo and Kane Davis and infielder Jose Flores from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for right-handers Mike DeJean and Mark Leiter and infielder Elvis Pena. In a separate transaction, the Rockies claimed left-hander Jimmy Osting off waivers from the Philadelphia Phillies. ... The Cardinals placed left-hander Jeff Tabaka on the 15-day disabled list because of a strained flexor muscle in his throwing elbow. Right-hander Gene Stechschulte was recalled from Triple-A Memphis to take Tabaka's spot on the roster. ... St. Louis' Bobby Bonilla, sitting in the dugout and on the disabled list, was ejected in the third by plate umpire Greg Bonin. ... Artist Peter Max threw out the first pitch and unveiled a painting of Helton, which will be auctioned for charity. Send this story to a friend