Nix's bases-loaded walk caps off two-run eighth for Rockies

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- No Clydesdales or convertibles. No success, either for the St. Louis Cardinals in their rescheduled home opener.

Third baseman Troy Glaus' throwing error allowed the tying run to score, and Jayson Nix walked with the bases loaded in a two-run eighth inning, helping the Colorado Rockies begin the defense of their NL championship with a 2-1 victory on Tuesday night.

"I made a bad throw. That's it," Glaus said. "Not much I can say about it. If it's a good throw it's an easy play."

Cardinals castoff Kip Wells pitched into the sixth in his second career Opening Day start, Taylor Buchholz (1-0) pitched a scoreless seventh and Manny Corpas pitched a perfect ninth for the save.

Wells was not offered a contract by the Cardinals after going 7-17 with a 5.70 ERA last year. He joined the Rockies with a chance to make their rotation, but had been slated for long relief before Monday's postponement.

"Obviously, my expectations were to go out there and pitch well, so it wasn't a surprise," Wells said. "I think the former teammates is where the adrenaline rush comes from, more than the actual stadium or the circumstances."

Colorado won 14 of its final 15 regular-season games to become the NL wild card, then won seven straight in the postseason for its first NL pennant before being swept by Boston in the World Series.

Kyle Lohse allowed three hits in five scoreless innings for St. Louis and Yadier Molina homered. The Cardinals were limited to six hits a night after their 5-1 third-inning lead against Rockies ace Jeff Francis was washed out.

The makeup opener began in 46-degree chill and the temperature was down to 42 degrees by the ninth. While the Cardinals announced a sellout crowd of 45,996, there were thousands of empty seats.

St. Louis got the pomp out of the way on Monday, when current players and Hall of Famers were delivered to home plate on the backs of convertibles and a team of Budweiser's famed steeds made an appearance.

Glaus, who replaced seven-time Gold Glove winner Scott Rolen at third base, threw sidearm and well wild of the plate on Matt Holliday's slow roller with runners at second and third and no outs in the eighth.

Troy Tulowitzki singled and Todd Helton doubled, both off Ryan Franklin (0-1), to open the inning. Tulowitzki and Molina, the Cardinals' catcher, thought the play at the plate could have gone either way.

"I could have been out, but in that situation I wouldn't have second-guessed myself either," Tulowitzki said. "If I had been thrown out I still would have thought I made the right choice."

Randy Flores struck out Brad Hawpe and Yorvit Torrealba with the bases loaded before Nix, the lone newcomer to the Rockies' lineup, walked on five pitches.

"He showed some good discipline," manager Clint Hurdle said. "He got to watch two guys in front of him. Flores was mixing it up, spinning a lot of balls down in the dirt challenging our guys' discipline more than the strike zone."

Flores had been close to rescuing Franklin, who has lost five straight decisions since Aug. 3. Franklin was 4-4 with a 3.04 ERA and 30 holds as the Cardinals' eighth-inning specialist, but was 0-2 with a 9.41 ERA in September and struggled with mechanics in spring training.

"I pitched great for five months and could have had that bad month in April instead of September," Franklin said. "That's over with and this is 2008 and it'll get better from here."

Game notes
The Rockies have won four of their last five openers, taking this one despite going 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position. ... Tulowitzki had three hits, matching his total from last season in St. Louis when he was 3-for-13 in three games. ... Three Cardinals made their major league debuts, with reliever Kyle McClellan working a perfect sixth that started with a Holliday groundout, pinch hitter Rico Washington grounding out in the fifth after 3,980 minor league at-bats and Rule 5 pickup Brian Barton getting a broken-bat pinch single in the seventh. ... The Cardinals have lost consecutive openers for the first time since 1996-97.