Saturday, June 07, 2014
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Gordon leads Dodgers past slumping Rockies

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[June 07, 2014]  DENVER -- Dee Gordon tripled twice and singled once while driving in three runs as the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Colorado Rockies 7-2 and spoiled Eddie Butler's major-league debut Friday night at Coors Field.

The win was just the third for the Dodgers in their past nine games.

The loss was the eighth straight for the Rockies, their longest slide since they dropped nine consecutive games from Sept. 15 to Sept. 23, 2012.

Gordon, the Dodgers' second baseman, tripled on Butler's second pitch of the game and scored on shortstop Hanley Ramirez's ground out.

In the fifth, after pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu led off with a double, Gordon followed with a triple.

Gordon also singled home a run in the sixth, when the Dodgers knocked Butler out of the game.

"Our at-bats were good," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "Dee got us going early. I thought our guys were good. Especially when you get a kid you don't really know."

In his Coors Field debut, Ryu pitched six innings, holding the Rockies scoreless until center fielder Drew Stubbs homered with one out in the sixth. Colorado added a run in that inning when catcher Michael McKenry doubled and third baseman Charlie Culberson followed with a triple. But Ryu got pinch-hitter Brandon Barnes to fly out on his final pitch.


"I could tell right away why a lot of pitchers don't like throwing here," Ryu said. "It was a difficult outing out there. All aspects of gripping the ball was tough today. I just tried to keep the ball low the entire game."

The Dodgers drove Butler, 23, from the game with a two-run rally in the sixth that began with third baseman Justin Turner's leadoff single. After catcher Drew Butera walked, both runners moved up on Ryu's sacrifice and scored on Gordon's single.

Butler, who replaced Franklin Morales in the rotation, was brought up after going 4-4 with a 2.49 ERA in 11starts at Double-A Tulsa. On Friday, he gave up 10 hits, walked three and was charged with six runs but pitched better than that line indicated.

"The guy has got a very bright future in this league," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "He showed big-time stuff. The Dodgers had some timely hits so the line [wasn't] all that pretty. He's a big-time arm. His fastball was beating the bat a lot of times tonight. He showed a very good changeup. Very poised, good pace. He's going to help us."

Butler, the 46th overall pick in the 2012 draft, became the first Rockies pitcher to start a game in his major-league debut since Chad Bettis on Aug. 1, 2013, at Atlanta and the first to do it at Coors Field since Edwar Cabrera on June 27, 2012. Before the game, Weiss said Butler was in the rotation to stay and was not just making a spot start.

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Butler was consistently hit 94-96 mph with his fastball and threw a 90-91 mph slider and an 89-90 mph changeup. He was unable to retire the side in order in any inning, however.

"I missed a few times over the heart of the plate, and they don't miss it here," Butler said.

Naturally, Butler will forever remember his debut, although not with particular fondness.

"I definitely want to have a better start than that and give the guys a chance to win," he said. "Gave up six runs in 5 1/3 -- it's not bad, but it's not great. We kind of got shut down a little bit, especially in key situations. I didn't help out there either."

Butler was referring to his two at-bats in the second and fourth innings when he grounded out to end the innings with runners on first and second. The Rockies went 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position.

NOTES: Rockies SS Troy Tulowitzki was ejected in the ninth inning by home plate umpire Dan Iassogna for arguing a called third strike. It was Tulowitzki's second ejection of the season. The other was May 14 at Kansas City. ...3B Michael Cuddyer was not in the Colorado lineup because of a strained left shoulder. He sustained the injury diving for a ball in the ninth inning Thursday night. ... The Dodgers selected the contract of IF Miguel Rojas from Triple-A Albuquerque. They optioned IF Erisbel Arruebarrena to Albuquerque and transferred RHP Chris Withrow (right elbow ligament tear) to the 60-day disabled list to make room on the 40-man roster for Rojas. ... The Rockies selected the contract of RHP Eddie Butler before his major league debut. They did not need to make room on the 40-man roster, having already cleared a spot Wednesday when C Jordan Pacheco was designated for assignment.

[ 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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