DENVER — The Colorado Rockies didn’t need another ninth-inning rally to beat St. Louis. One swing in the final frame was enough to beat the Cardinals again.
Chris Iannetta hit a leadoff home run in the bottom of the ninth inning and the Rockies pulled off another comeback win against St. Louis, beating the Cardinals 8-7 Wednesday night.
A day after the Rockies scored a remarkable nine runs in the ninth, including a home run from former Rebel star Seth Smith, to stun St. Louis 12-9, Colorado came back this time after trailing 5-0 in the middle innings.
“Very similar to last night,” Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. “We kept playing.”
It was another disappointing loss for St. Louis, which has pounded out 27 hits in the first two games of the series and has nothing to show for it.
“When you score 16 runs in two nights, and with our staff, we generally win,” said outfielder Matt Holliday, who had two home runs against his former team. “It hasn’t worked too well.”
The Rockies late offense had a lot to do with that. Colorado has scored 13 runs after the seventh inning in this series.
“No matter what’s going on guys aren’t giving at-bats away,” Clint Barmes said. “No matter what the deficit, we’re going to chip away.”
They completed the comeback in the eighth. Brad Eldred opened with a double, Ian Stewart walked and Dexter Fowler hit a three-run homer in the Rockies eighth that made it 7-all.
“You’re just trying to get a hit and keep the train going,” Fowler said.
The next two batters singled, but Motte kept it tied by striking out Seth Smith, whose three-run homer with two outs in the ninth won Tuesday’s game, and pinch-hitter Jason Giambi.
Huston Street (1-1) retired the heart of the Cardinals lineup in the top of the ninth
Iannetta then connected against Evan MacLane (0-1), called up from Triple-A before the game.
“Not a good debut,” Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa said.
“I’m not happy with it,” he said. “I’m here to pitch and I have to help the team win. I should have made a better pitch.”
Early on it didn’t look like the game would come down to the rookie. Felipe Lopez and Colby Rasmus led off the game with singles and Albert Pujols’ double-play grounder scored a run. Holliday, Jon Jay and Yadier Molina followed with consecutive singles to make it 2-0.
Holliday doubled and Jay singled in the third for a 3-0 lead. Holliday and Jay hit consecutive homers in the fifth off Aaron Cook.
Jay finished with three hits.
“It didn’t look like we were beaten today to start the day,” LaRussa said. “It wasn’t like we were reliving yesterday. The opposite was true.”
An error by shortstop Tyler Greene’s error on Barmes’ potential double-play grounder set up the Rockies’ three-run fifth.
That got the Rockies believing in another rally.
“I asked (head trainer Keith) Dugger , ‘Can we do it again?'” Street said.
The Cardinals made it 6-3 in the sixth when Skip Schumaker, Lopez and Rasmus singled.
Stewart’s single in the bottom of the inning made it 6-4 and chased starter Jaime Garcia. Holliday led off the seventh with his second homer of the night and 14th of the season to extend the lead to 7-4.
Jonathan Herrera, Carlos Gonzalez and Eldred had three hits for the Rockies.
NOTES: Holliday has 15 multihomer games in his career. … The Rockies placed 1B Todd Helton (stiff back) on the 15-day DL and purchased Eldred’s contract from Triple-A Colorado Springs. Eldred started at first bases. … The Cardinals placed RHP Adam Ottavino (right shoulder strain) on the 15-day DL, retroactive to Sunday, and promoted MacLane from Triple-A Memphis. … Barmes extended his hit streak to a career-high 14 games.
The Associated Press