Tulowitzki has career-high five hits in Rockies' return

Updated: July 22, 2008, 2:21 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

DENVER -- Troy Tulowitzki will think twice about slamming his bat in frustration again.

Troy Tulowitzki

Tulowitzki

There's a healing scar at the base of his right index finger to remind the Colorado Rockies shortstop of the consequences.

Tulowitzki was reinstated from the 15-day disabled list Monday, taking his spot at shortstop against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Colorado also reinstated Kip Wells, who's been out since undergoing surgery to remove a blood clot from his pitching hand earlier this season. He's made his first start Monday night since the Rockies' season opener at St. Louis.

Wells (1-2) had a frightful first in the Rockies' 16-10 loss, throwing 40 pitches and getting just one out before being yanked by manager Clint Hurdle. The righty plodded off the field to a smattering of boos. He gave up seven hits and eight runs, seven earned.

"There aren't a lot of times when you watch 26 of the 27 outs in a game you started," Wells said. "Of course I am disappointed. To add insult to injury, the bullpen had to practically pitch nine innings. I couldn't seem to find a way to get an out.

Tulowitzki had a career-high five hits in his first game back since slamming his bat in frustration on the Fourth of July.

He was pleased with his performance.

"Anytime you get any hits it's nice, let alone five," Tulowitzki said. "You know, we lost the game tonight and that's the main thing I look at."

To make room for Tulowitzki and Wells, the Rockies optioned infielder Joe Koshansky and pitcher Juan Morillo to Triple-A Colorado Springs.

Tulowitzki needed 16 stitches after hammering his maple bat into the ground in frustration on the Fourth of July, sending shards of wood into his hand. He was upset when Hurdle yanked him during a double switch with the Rockies trailing Florida 15-12 in a contest they would win, 18-17.

Tulowitzki said slamming his bat is something he's done plenty of times. This time, he was just unlucky as the bat splintered.

However, he was fortunate that no tendons or nerves were damaged.

"It's healed up and it's time to play now," said Tulowitzki, who suffered the injury three weeks after returning from a torn quadriceps tendon that cost him 46 games.

The 23-year-old returned to the team hitting .166 with three homers and 16 RBIs. He boosted his average to .192. Last season, he led the Rockies to their first World Series with a stellar rookie season, finishing second in the NL Rookie of the Year race and being rewarded with a new contract.

He said he's the same hitter, despite his recent struggles at the plate.

"I still believe in my abilities and I'm going to turn it around," he said.

Hurdle has talked to Tulowitzki about trying to do too much, the same lecture he's already had with most of the team.

"Everybody's tried to slow the game down, and tried to bring their own lunch pail to work and do their own thing and not try to get outside of that," Hurdle said. "That's what I encouraged him to do. We've got a lot of guys that have had to work through that. He's probably the last one that needs to find that comfort zone."

Wells has missed 74 games since being place on the 60-day disabled list, retroactive to April 29, with a blood clot in his right hand.

The 31-year-old had a blocked artery in his right arm in 2006, which had to be replaced by a vein taken from his leg.

His doctors checked out that area as well during the procedure on May 6, but Wells said soon after the surgery that no further problems were detected.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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