DENVER (AP) - Edinson Volquez's recovery from a rough first inning came too late to make a difference in the latest loss for the San Diego Padres.
It just might make a difference down the road, though.
Volquez gave up three runs in the opening inning, including a two-run homer to Dexter Fowler, and the Padres wound up losing 9-1 to the Colorado Rockies on Sunday.
San Diego was swept at Coors Field for the first time in 10 years and concluded its season-opening road trip at 1-5.
``It was a little tough for me to get loose in the first inning,' Volquez said. ``But you've got to battle. You've got to keep pitching, try to keep the game alive.'
Volquez (0-2), coming off a three-inning outing in which he gave up six runs in a season-opening loss to the New York Mets, regrouped to go six innings against the Rockies, allowing four runs on nine hits overall.
Colorado got to Volquez for one more run on Jonathan Herrera's two-out RBI single in sixth before Wilin Rosario broke open a tight game with a three-run homer in the seventh off reliever Anthony Bass.
``He had a high pitch count in the first and we've seen that before so far in these six games a couple times,' Padres manager Bud Black said. ``That's not ideal for a starting pitcher. It puts you at risk for a game that can get away from you. But Volky hung in there. He recovered well, got us through six in a situation that looked a little bleak after the first inning - three runs and 35 pitches. It was a good recovery.'
Volquez said he was encouraged by the way he was able to limit the damage after the first.
``I think I'm pretty close,' he said. ``The way I pitched today, I feel pretty good about myself. I was more aggressive in the strike zone, stayed down and didn't walk many people.'
Jhoulys Chacin (1-0) turned in another efficient performance as he surrendered one run before being pulled with two outs in the seventh. Chacin threw 99 pitches, nearly becoming the first Rockies starter to throw more than 100 pitches since June 12 - a stretch of 108 games. It's the longest string in the majors since records started being kept by STATS in 1988.
``He kept the ball down and changed speeds,' said the Padres' Mark Kotsay, who had two hits. ``Typical of what guys do when you don't score very many runs, is they pitch effectively in the zone with their strikes and keep hitters off balance. Not a lot of strikeouts. A lot of weak hit balls and some balls hit right at guys.'
On this day, everything went right for the Rockies - right field, anyway. Eric Young Jr. led off the first with a double to right. Fowler then appeared to be hit on the foot with a pitch from Volquez and began jogging to first base.
Only, home plate umpire Paul Emmel didn't see it that way and motioned Fowler back into the batter's box.
On the next pitch, Fowler sent a 93 mph fastball into the bullpen beyond right field. Reid Brignac later added an RBI double.
Rosario lined a three-run homer into the left field bleachers to wrap up the win for Colorado, which now has 13 homers in six games.
San Diego scratched out its lone run in the fourth, when Chris Denorfia laced a two-out double down the line that scored Jedd Gyorko.
NOTES: Following an off-day Monday, the Padres will throw LHP Clayton Richard (0-1) in their home opener Tuesday against the Los Angeles Dodgers. There are only a few scattered single tickets remaining for the contest at Petco Park. ... LHP Jorge De La Rosa will throw for Colorado on Monday night in San Francisco against LHP Madison Bumgarner (1-0).
The Associated Press News Service
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