Jorge De La Rosa looked up and down for two-plus innings before exiting the game at 45 pitches with groin tightness. De La Rosa probably would have left the game at that point anyway given his pitch limit, but the minds of Rockies fans would have been more at ease without team trainer Keith Dugger escorting the veteran left-hander off the field.
De La Rosa walked the first batter of the game and nearly pegged A's outfielder Sam Fuld in the head in the next at-bat before requesting groundskeepers to perform maintenance on the mound. The tinkering helped; De La Rosa whiffed the final two batters of the inning. He whiffed the leadoff hitter in the second, as well, before surrendering a run on a pair of hits. After getting one out in the third, De La Rosa's day ended on a single off the bat of Billy Burns, who reached base four times.
Butler came on at the beginning of the next inning and looked sharp initially, topping out at 97 mph with his fastball and coupling it with a devastating changeup to keep the A's off the board in the fourth. The Rockies' No. 2 pitching prospect lost his command in the fourth, walking a pair of batters and hitting one to load the bases. Butler bore down at that point, striking out Fuld and inducing a double play grounder off the bat of Brett Lawrie to escape the jam.
The 2012 first-rounder lasted 3⅔ innings, allowing a run on four hits and two walks. He struck out three.
Carlos Gonzalez had two hits, including a two-run double, to pace the Rockies' offense. Rafael Ynoa and Kyle Parker, both of whom have swung the bat well for the majority of the spring, added a couple of hits apiece.
Colorado will be back on the field Saturday for a pair of split-squad games. Jhoulys Chacin will be on the hill at Salt River Fields against the Dodgers. In Goodyear against the Cleveland Indians, David Hale, who was roughed up in his last appearance, will start for the Rockies opposite Danny Salazar, the victim of some issues of his own this spring.