Joe Saunders came into tonight 73-58 with a 4.11 career ERA. His ERA as a Diamondback was 3.78. He hardly looks the part, but Joe Saunders is a solidly decent major league pitcher. Against the Rockies, he might as well be Clayton Kershaw.
Saunders held the Rockies to just three hits and two runs over seven innings. The only Rockie to solve Saunders was Michael Cuddyer, who smoked two solo home runs. Reliever Josh Roenicke poked a single to right field. That was it. Josh Rutledge struck out three times, and Carlos Gonzalez struck out twice and grounded out weakly to first base.
In all, Saunders struck out nine Rockies on his way to a 6-2 record with a 3.32 ERA in 9 career starts vs. Colorado, who has taken over as Saunders' favorite divisional punching bag since he left the AL West (13-4, 3.34 vs. OAK; 8-1, 3.75 vs. SEA).
36 - 60
Edwar Cabrera made his second MLB start, and despite appearing to be a spot start, Cabrera was kept on the 4-man rotation pitch count. That was particularly unfortunate, as Cabrera was not very efficient at Chase Field. He walked a tightrope all night, yet managed to reach the fourth inning without allowing a run, stranding six baserunners in the first three frames. After a walk, double and strikeout of the pitcher in the fourth inning, Josh Roenicke relieved the lefty.
Roenicke and Rex Brothers struggled in relief, each allowing two runs.
Michael Cuddyer (+.258): 2-for-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, K.
Matt Reynolds (+.003): 1.0 IP, K, H
Josh Roenicke (-.175): 2.2 IP, 2 ER, 1 inherited runner scored, 1 BB, 0 K, 2 H, HR. (+.018): 1-for-1.
Josh Rutledge (-.090): 0-for-3, 3 K.
Rex Brothers (-.077): 1.0 IP, 2 ER, 2 H, 2 BB, 1 K.
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