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Rockies drop final Gray Day to Giants

Defensive mishaps and a hot opposing starting pitcher did in the Rockies in their final road game of 2016.

Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports

The San Francisco Giants beat the Colorado Rockies 7-2 Thursday night. The Giants showed why they're in the playoff hunt Thursday night behind one of their stellar starting pitchers, Johnny Cueto. Cueto struck out 11 Rockies through his seven innings of work and only allowed two runs in his final regular season start. Jon Gray pitched better than his stat line indicated with defensive mishaps and slowly hit balls as the source of his demise. He pitched 5.1 innings, gave up five runs (four earned) on eight hits, walked three, and struck out three.

The Rockies started the game off with a bang, scoring two quick runs and putting pressure on the Giants. The Rockies alternated extra-base hits with strikeouts in the top of the first. Blackmon led off the game with a double and scored on Arenado's double while David Dahl's triple drove in Arenado. The early power output was huge, especially against a top-tier pitcher like Cueto.

Gray cruised through the first three innings, only seeing one threat over those innings -- a two-out triple in the second -- but was able to avoid any damage.

The Giants finally struck in the fourth. Gray walked Buster Posey to start the inning and quickly had a no-out, runners on second and third situation after a Hunter Pence double. Posey scored on a Brandon Crawford groundout and a Joe Panik single scored Pence with two outs. The fourth inning ended with a score of 2-2.

The game got ugly in the sixth. The inning started with a Crawford single off Jon Gray's foot and a Gray throwing error pushed him to second. Pagan laid down a perfect bunt and beat out an Arenado throw for an infield single and the bases were loaded on a Gerardo Parra attempt to throw out Crawford at third on a ground ball to first. With nobody out, the situation seemed dire.

Gray got Conor Gillaspie to hit a sacrifice fly, giving up the run bet getting that very important first out of the inning. Things looked manageable with Johnny Cueto, notorious bad swinger, coming up to the plate. With one out, Cueto is expected to drop a bunt down and he did. Unfortunately, there was a miscommunication between Gray and Arenado on whose ball that was, causing a rushed throw from Arenado and the ball skipped down the first base line, allowing the two runners on base to score.

Gray was replaced by Chris Rusin, who induced a ground ball out and a popout to end the inning but not before the damage was done. The Rockies headed into the seventh down 5-2.

The Giants added two more in the bottom of the eighth after a bases loaded walk and a sacrifice fly, making the score 7-2.

The Rockies start their final series of the season as they host the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday at 6:10 p.m. MT. Chad Bettis will take on 27-year-old rookie Brent Suter.