Rockies 5, Athletics 2

Ubaldo Jimenez looks forward to this opening day assignment even

more than his first one. This time he’ll start at home.

Jimenez showed he’s set, pitching six shutout innings as a

Colorado Rockies split-squad beat the Oakland Athletics 5-2


”I am 100 percent ready for the season to start,” Jimenez

said. ”I’m happy to be opening at home in front of our fans. We

all feel like we have some unfinished business.”

Jimenez gave up four hits, struck out three and walked none.

Four of his five spring starts were scoreless – he also threw six

shutout innings in a minor league game.

”That was a wonderful way for an opening day starter to finish

the spring,” Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. ”He went out there

and pitched. He used all his pitches effectively.”

Jimenez will start Friday at home against Arizona.

”We can do it all,” Jimenez said. ”We have starting pitching,

we have a bullpen, we have guys who can play defense and guys who

can hit. This year we were working on getting ready for the season.

Last year we were working to get hurt.”

Willy Taveras had three hits, scored twice and showed off a

strong arm for the Rockies.

”This guy had a spectacular spring,” Tracy said. ”I’ve seen a

better player this spring than what I saw from the other dugout as

an opposing manager.”

Kevin Kouzmanoff had two hits, his third straight multihit game

for the A’s.

”Our guys are ready to go,” A’s manager Bob Geren said. ”The

pitchers have been great. This is a good note for these guys to

leave on.”

The A’s open the annual Bay Bridge exhibition series in San

Francisco on Monday night.

A’s starter Bobby Cramer went two scoreless innings. Craig

Breslow, Brad Ziegler and Jerry Blevins each pitched a shutout


Taveras and Alfredo Amezaga hit back-to-back doubles with two

outs in the sixth to give the Rockies a 1-0 lead.

The A’s had runners on first and third with no outs in the

fourth. Jimenez got Mark Ellis to fly out and then induced a

double-play comebacker by Conor Jackson.

”He’s the ace of our staff and he’s awfully good,” Tracy said

of Jimenez, 19-8 with a 2.88 ERA last year. ”He’s become the ace

for a reason. He fields his position well.”

NOTES: The A’s optioned RHP Joey Devine to Triple-A Sacramento.

… The Rockies optioned RHP Matt Dailey, RHP Greg Reynolds, C

Jordan Pacheco and IF Eric Young Jr. to Triple-A Colorado Springs

and reassigned LHP Eric Stults and LHP Rex Brothers to their minor

league camp. … A’s 1B Daric Barton is 10 for 27 over his last

nine games. … Tracy’s son, Mark, drew a walk in his first

appearance with the parent club. ”That was special,” the manager