SAN DIEGO (AP) -- Charles Johnson has been trying to improve his
hitting on the road.
Five straight doubles over two games ought to help.Johnson doubled three times Tuesday night and drove in four runs
to help Colorado beat the San Diego Padres 7-1 Tuesday night for
their first back-to-back road wins of this season.Johnson doubled in each of his first three at-bats, giving him
five straight over two nights, one short of the major league
record."Especially with my speed, it's very impressive," Johnson
said. "I had no idea until someone told me at the end of the game
that I had five doubles in a row. I didn't have the slightest
clue."A year ago, Johnson batted just .153 in away games. With his
3-for-4 night, he improved to .282 on the road this season."Last year, it seemed I couldn't buy a hit on the road,"
Johnson said. "Now I'm just trying to put the ball in play and
drive in runs when I can."The Rockies got seven strong innings from Aaron Cook (1-0), who
claimed the first win this season by a pitcher in the fourth or
fifth spot in the Colorado rotation.It was Cook's first win since July 26, 2003. He was recalled
from Triple-A Colorado Springs on May 17. He allowed one run and
six hits in his longest stint in four starts this season."I'm the type of pitcher who is going to give up singles,"
said Cook, who held the Padres to one extra-base hit and induced 14
groundball outs. "As long as I don't get beat giving up singles,
then I'm on my game."Cook escaped a bases-loaded jam with one out in the first
inning, when he got Terrence Long to ground into a double play
after first going to 3-0 in the count."This year, I know if I make my pitch, I'm able to get out of
it," Cook said. "That's the difference from last year. With one
out, I knew we'd been able to get the double play if I made my
pitch."Aaron Miles tripled and doubled in his first two at-bats and
scored twice to help Colorado take a 7-0 lead in the third against
Justin Germano (1-1).The Padres lost their fifth straight at home, sandwiched around
a 7-5 road trip."We were playing well (on the road trip), swinging the bats
well," Padres' Phil Nevin said. "We expected to come home and
keep it rolling. But we just couldn't get it done."Johnson hit a three-run double with two out in the third to
complete a four-run outburst and chase Germano. Todd Helton drove
in the first run of the inning with a groundout for his second RBI
of game."This is something that we need to keep doing," Cook said.
"This shows here how good a team we really are. If we keep going
like this, then we're going to pull through just fine."Germano gave up six earned runs and five hits in 2 2-3 innings.
In his previous outing, he pitched six without allowing an earned
run, but got no decision.Padres shortstop Khalil Greene had fielding and throwing errors
on the same play to contribute to an unearned run in the Rockies'
two-run second.The Padres scored in the third when Sean Burroughs doubled and
scored on a groundout by Nevin. Burroughs extended his hitting
streak to 13 games, longest on the club this season."It's hard to win games when you get one run," Padres manager
Bruce Bochy said. "We're too good of a lineup to struggle like
this. We're going through a little rut right now."
The Rockies won a series for the first time in nine tries
this season. They had lost seven and tied one for the longest
series drought in club history. ... Before reaching San Diego, the
Rockies lost eight straight road games. ... The Padres' Jay Payton
extended his season-best hitting streak to nine games with an
infield single in the sixth. ... Rockies manager Clint Hurdle tied
Buddy Bell with 161 wins for second-most by a Colorado manager. ...
Rockies OF Mark Sweeney left the game in the third with a right
hamstring strain. He is day-to-day.