Diamondbacks-Rockies Preview

The Arizona Diamondbacks haven’t been over .500 since defeating
the Colorado Rockies on opening day. They are finally in position
to move above the mark again, thanks to their longest winning
streak in three years.

Seeking a seventh consecutive victory, the visiting Diamondbacks
take on the slumping Rockies as the teams open a four-game set with
a double-header Tuesday.

Since losing a season-worst five straight from May 8-13, Arizona
(23-23) has taken eight of nine. The Diamondbacks have won six in a
row for the first time since an eight-game run April 4-12, 2008,
batting .307 and compiling a 2.89 ERA during the streak.

“We’re rolling on a lot of cylinders right now,” right-hander
Daniel Hudson said after beating Minnesota 3-2 on Sunday. “It feels
good. Everything’s kind of going good right now – our hitting,
pitching, fielding. So I think we’re taking a streak on the road in
a good spot.”

Arizona is four games behind division-leading San Francisco and
a half-game behind second-place Colorado (23-22), which is on the
verge of matching its longest losing streak of the year after a
three-game sweep by Milwaukee over the weekend.

“We hit some balls hard. When we do square balls up, we’re not
catching much of a break. That’s for doggone sure. We just have to
move on,” manager Jim Tracy said after a 3-1 loss Sunday. “With
what’s going on with us right now offensively, it’s one situation
like that after another.”

The Rockies have totaled three runs in the last two games.

All-Star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki went 0 for 3 on Sunday and
has batted .174 over the last 22 games, during which Colorado has
gone 7-15.

Tulowitzki may not be looking forward to facing the
Diamondbacks, against whom he is hitless in 21 at-bats this season.
His career .223 average versus Arizona is his lowest against any NL
opponent.

The Rockies, 2-3 against the Diamondbacks this season, have
taken 12 of 15 meetings at Coors Field while averaging 6.5
runs.

Jorge De La Rosa (5-2, 3.34 ERA) will try to get the Rockies off
to a strong start to the doubleheader by continuing his dominance
over Arizona. The left-hander has gone 5-1 with a 2.03 ERA in his
last seven matchups with the Diamondbacks.

De La Rosa is coming off perhaps his best outing of the year,
pitching a five-hitter and giving up one earned run in a 2-1 loss
at Philadelphia on Wednesday.

“Everything was working,” he told MLB.com. “I’ve been working on
my pitches since spring training. I have to keep pitching like
that.”

Joe Saunders (0-5, 5.02) will oppose De La Rosa as he tries
again for his elusive first win of the season. He allowed one run
in six innings of a 5-4, 11-inning win over Atlanta on
Wednesday.

Saunders held the visiting Rockies to three runs in six innings
of a 4-3 victory May 3. He gave up seven runs – four earned – in 2
1-3 innings during his only start at Coors Field, a 13-4 loss Sept.
10 in which he opposed De La Rosa.

Jhoulys Chacin (5-2, 2.70), who limited Arizona to two runs over
seven innings to win 6-4 on May 4, takes the mound in the nightcap
while the Diamondbacks give the ball to Josh Collmenter (3-0,
0.69).

Chacin threw seven innings of one-run ball and struck out a
season-best nine in a 7-1 road victory over the Phillies on
Thursday. The right-hander has gone 2-1 with a 1.80 ERA in five
home starts this season.

Collmenter allowed two hits in six scoreless innings for the
second straight start – the second of his career – to beat the
Braves 2-1 on Thursday.

“You couldn’t ask for more,” manager Kirk Gibson said of the
right-hander. “Hopefully he’ll keep it going.”