Series: Game 3 of 3

Arizona won 2-1

Game 1: Friday, September 15
Game 2: Saturday, September 16
in 16
Game 3: Sunday, September 17

Rockies 6

(69-80, 30-48 away)

Diamondbacks 1

(71-78, 38-39 home)

    4:40 PM ET, September 17, 2006

    Chase Field, Phoenix, Arizona 

    123456789 R H E
    COL 030000021 6 5 0
    ARI 000010000 1 3 4

    W: J. Francis (12-11)

    L: M. Batista (10-7)

    Francis gives up three hits in eight innings to beat Arizona

    PHOENIX (AP) -- After improving to 6-1 lifetime against Arizona on Sunday afternoon, Colorado left-hander Jeff Francis could not explain why he pitches so well against the Diamondbacks.

    "I've had some rough ones against them," he said. "Especially in this building [Chase Field] I think I've had some rough ones."

    Sunday's start wasn't one of them. Francis gave up three hits in eight strong innings to help the Colorado Rockies beat the error-prone Diamondbacks 6-1.

    Francis (12-11) struck out five and did not walk a batter as Colorado snapped a three-game losing streak. His six wins against Arizona are the most against any opponent in his two-plus major league seasons. He has a career 3.74 ERA against the Diamondbacks.

    Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said he considered allowing Francis, who threw 97 pitches, to go after his second career complete game. But Hurdle decided to give closer Brian Fuentes an inning of work after three days off.

    "[Francis] pitched outstanding," Hurdle said. "You weigh one against the other. I try to do what's best for the team."

    The clubs returned to Chase Field for a game that began less than 14 hours after the end of Saturday night's game, a 16-inning 7-6 Arizona victory. The Diamondbacks looked like they had overslept their wake-up call. They committed a season-worst four errors, three in a disastrous second inning.

    After Colorado took a 1-0 second-inning lead on back-to-back doubles by Baker and Brad Hawpe, Arizona committed three errors in the space of two batters.

    With one out and runners at first and second, Francis bunted to Diamondbacks pitcher Miguel Batista, who was charged with an error when he couldn't pick up the ball in time to make a throw to first.

    The next batter, Kazuo Matsui, grounded to first base. Conor Jackson saw the ball bounce off his glove for a fielding error, and then he threw it past Batista, who was covering first. Two runs scored, with Matsui receiving credit for an RBI fielder's choice.

    "I've got to make that play, there's no doubt about it," said Jackson, whose 11 errors are third-most on the team. "It just kind of popped out."

    Arizona manager Bob Melvin said the inning deflated his team, which had won three straight.

    "We kicked it around, and psychologically that can demoralize you a little bit, especially the way Francis is pitching," Melvin said.

    That was all Batista (10-7) allowed in six innings. He gave up three runs, one earned, and three hits. Batista, who walked three and struck out three, has one victory in his last 11 starts.

    The three runs were all the support Francis needed. Mixing breaking balls and fastballs, he kept the Diamondback hitters off-balance all afternoon.

    Francis gave up only a double to Eric Byrnes in the second, a triple to Orlando Hudson in the fifth and a single to Luis Gonzalez in the seventh. Hudson scored on Chris Snyder's bouncer to third base to cut Colorado's lead to 3-1.

    It was a strong showing for Francis, who had allowed 10 hits in each of his last three starts.

    "He won't ever tell you, but I think he's proud of himself after his performance today," Hurdle said.

    Colorado went up 5-1 on Baker's two-run homer off reliever Greg Aquino in the eighth. It was the second career homer for Baker, who was recalled from Triple-A Colorado Springs Sept. 8.

    Arizona was charged with its fourth error when pitcher Enrique Gonzalez made a throwing error in the ninth inning.

    Game notes

    Luis Gonzalez received standing ovations as he came to bat throughout the weekend. He finished the game 1-for-4. ... 10 of Arizona's last 13 games are against the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres, who are battling for the NL West title. The Diamondbacks open a three-game series at San Diego on Tuesday night. ... Arizona turned its 160th double play this year, a club record.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press