Giants 7, Rockies 3(10)

BY foxsports • March 14, 2009

Manuel Corpas is making a strong case to be the Colorado Rockies closer. The right-hander pitched another scoreless inning this spring, but the Rockies lost in 10 innings to the San Francisco Giants 7-3 Friday. "He has had to face a handful of left-handers already and he has done a pretty good job of it and is keeping the ball down and away," Colorado manager Clint Hurdle said. "He needs to get the sinker sinking and the slider sliding. He seems to be in a pretty good place right now." Corpas opened the sixth by getting a harmless grounder to first before allowing a single to Pablo Sandoval. A double play quickly finished the inning. Corpas won the closer job at the end of camp a year ago but was replaced by Brian Fuentes, who signed in the offseason with the Angels. He has given up only two hits in four innings, while striking out two and walking none. Corpas is competing with Huston Street, who joined the team in November in the trade with Oakland involving outfielder Matt Holliday, for the closing role. Street, bothered by a stiff right quadriceps, has allowed five earned runs in 2 1-3 innings, giving up six hits - two homers - while walking two. "Nobody has the edge," Hurdle said. "All of our guys just need to keep pitching." San Francisco starter Kevin Pucetas already has the task of trying to make the big league club, but felt added stress while on the mound against the Rockies. He had his mom yelling and cheering from the stands. "Everybody wants to do well. You have scouts in the stands and I had extra pressure since my mom came into town for her first spring training," Pucetas said. "It is funny ever since I was 5 that is the one voice you pick out in the stands and she is yelling at the top of her lungs." His mother, Marsha, watched her oldest son of 11 kids pitch for the first time for a big league club. She watched as he gave up one run through four innings, while allowing five hits. "The biggest thing is I am battling my own mechanics a little bit. I'm trying to make too many adjustments instead of just going out there and letting it rip and knowing what I can do," Pucetas said. "You see (Colorado's) Todd Helton up there and you want to dial that switch up a little bit more. I just need to do a better job of controlling my emotions and controlling my body and making my pitches and getting my outs." Pucetas had a 32-7 record with a 2.35 ERA in 66 minor league games. He was 10-2 with a 3.02 ERA at Class A San Jose a year ago. Pucetas got the starting nod for the Giants' road game because Randy Johnson stayed at San Francisco's camp to throw four innings in a minor league game. Johnson allowed four hits and an unearned run, while striking out two and walking none in his 59-pitch outing. The Giants took the lead in the 10th with a solo-homer by Andres Torres. Eugenio Velez went 3-for-5 with a two-run triple, a double and a run scored. Yorvit Torrealba went 2-for-3, while Seth Smith and Ian Stewart had doubles for the Rockies' only extra base hits. Note: Colorado third baseman Garrett Atkins missed action with a recurring right hip flexor strain. ... Rockies outfielder Brad Hawpe is expected to be in the lineup on Saturday against Seattle for the first time since injuring his pinkie on Feb. 27. ... Hawpe had stitches after having his hand stepped on heading back into second against the Los Angeles Angels.

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