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Franklin Morales helps Rockies beat Padres 3-1

AP - Sports
Franklin Morales helps Rockies beat Padres 3-1

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Colorado Rockies starting pitcher Franklin Morales works against the San Diego Padres during the first …

SAN DIEGO (AP) -- The Colorado Rockies got another unexpected outing from a starting pitcher who had been relegated to the bullpen.

Franklin Morales followed a good start by Jorge De La Rosa with one of his own, helping the Rockies beat the San Diego Padres 3-1 Thursday.

Colorado used Wilin Rosario's tiebreaking groundout in a three-run seventh to overcome Ian Kennedy, who pitched a one-hit shutout through the sixth.

Morales (1-1) allowed one run and four hits in six innings with five strikeouts and a walk. Morales made his second career start against the Padres - and first since allowing one hit in six shutout innings at San Diego on Sept. 21, 2007.

''That was crucial for him to get through the sixth,'' Colorado manager Walt Weiss said. ''He stepped up. It's tough to go back and forth between the 'pen and starting.''

Injuries to Tyler Chatwood and Brett Anderson, have forced the Rockies to start Morales and De La Rosa, who both were sent to the bullpen earlier after ineffective starts.

De La Rosa was the loser in Wednesday night's 4-2 defeat, but threw well; he allowed three runs - two earned - and seven hits in six innings.

''I have a job to do,'' Morales said. ''I don't worry about where I pitch. I just want to do whatever I can to help my team win.''

Morales allowed a solo homer to Xavier Nady leading off the fourth, a drive off the facing of the second deck in left field.

That stood until the seventh. Corey Dickerson reached on a one-out double, Troy Tulowitzki walked and Justin Morneau lined a ball to right field. Chris Denorfia broke in, then retreated as the ball went his head for an RBI double.

''Morneau hit that ball pretty hard and they got a couple guys on,'' Kennedy said. ''I was trying to get a double play in that situation.''

Rosario grounded out to shortstop as Tulowitzki scored for a 2-1 lead, and Nolan Arenado followed with a run-scoring single.

''Kennedy was tough, pounding the ball down, hitting the corners,'' Morneau said. ''But when he made mistakes, we took advantage, and we had some good at-bats in the seventh.''

LaTroy Hawkins pitched the ninth to remain perfect in four save chances, finishing just the fourth win for the Rockies in 11 road games this season.

Kennedy retired his first 12 batters before walking Tulowitzki leading off the fifth. He didn't allow a hit until Arenado's leadoff double in the sixth.

''It's tough. I threw well for the first six innings,'' Kennedy said. ''I felt like I was executing my pitches. I was getting ahead of guys and when I didn't start off with strike one I felt like I was getting back to even in the count and it was just nice to execute like that.''

NOTES: Nady's homer was his third of the season and San Diego's eighth, the lowest total in the NL. ... San Diego's Everth Cabrera extended his hitting streak to nine games with a second-inning double. ... Padres 3B Chase Headley was held out of the starting lineup for a second consecutive game with a strained right biceps. Headley had a pinch-single in the eighth. ... Rockies RF Michael Cuddyer left in the seventh with a right hamstring cramp. ... Longtime Rockies 1B Todd Helton is scheduled to be inducted into the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame Thursday night at Sports Authority Field in Denver. ... Padres 1B Yonder Alonso entered in the ninth inning and played third base for the third time in his big league career. ... Anderson had surgery on Thursday to have pins inserted into his fractured left index finger. The pins are expected to remain for six weeks. ... The Rockies open a three-game set at home Friday night against Philadelphia, which sends RHP Jonathan Pettibone (0-0) against RHP Tyler Chatwood (0-0). ... Giants RHP Matt Cain (0-2) opposes Padres RHP Tyson Ross (1-2) on Friday night.

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