DENVER -- As the Colorado Rockies keep piling up the victories, a different star seems to emerge each day.
On Sunday, it was Clint Barmes' turn.Barmes homered, drove in two runs and scored two more and the Colorado Rockies completed a sweep of the Pittsburgh Pirates and ran their latest winning streak to five games with a 5-4 victory.Less than 24 hours after Todd Helton hit a game-winning homer in the ninth, the Rockies have won for the 16th time in 17 games -- including an 11-game winning streak -- and improved to 18-5 under manager Jim Tracy.Barmes doubled to drive in Colorado's second run in the second inning and homered in the fourth to score what proved to be the game-winning run."Clint Barmes is thriving where he's hitting in our lineup right now," Tracy said. "He's giving us everything we need from him at the plate and he's making the plays in the field."The veteran second baseman and No. 2 hitter has eight home runs and is batting .290."I do what I can," Barmes said. "And I'll take every hit I can get and make a contribution when the situation presented me."Colorado finished its homestand 8-1."Great game to win, an incredible home stand," said Tracy, who took over for Clint Hurdle on May 29.Jorge De La Rosa (3-7) overcame a shaky start to win at Coors Field for the first time this season. He went 5 2/3 innings and allowed three walks, four runs and seven hits. He also struck out six."In a game like today where both pitchers were battling the strike zone, he stuck it out and we were at least able to give him a little run support," Barmes said of De La Rosa. "This is the way we have been playing during this stretch.Huston Street worked a perfect ninth for his 16th save in 17 chances. Street has now recorded either a save or a win in 10 of his last 11 appearances.Freddy Sanchez homered and drove in three runs for the Pirates, who have lost four straight.Pittsburgh starter Paul Maholm (4-4) allowed five runs on eight hits and struck out seven in five innings.Rookie Andrew McCutchen tripled to open the game and one pitch later scored on a single to center by Sanchez. De La Rosa worked out of a bases-loaded jam to avoid more damage.The Pirates added two runs in the second. McCutchen singled with two outs and Sanchez followed with a home run that barely cleared the wall in left field.Colorado tied it at 3 in the second inning on an RBI single by Dexter Fowler and RBI doubles by Barmes and Ryan Spilborghs.Barmes caught a break on his double when Sanchez lost his high popup in the sun behind second base. Although the cloudless sky warranted sunglasses, Sanchez wasn't wearing any."I don't wear sunglasses. I flat out don't wear them because they affect me on ground balls," Sanchez said. "I should have made the play anyway."Pittsburgh manager John Russell agreed and bemoaned the play's consequences."Freddy normally makes that play," Russell said. "It hurt. It cost us two runs."Garrett Atkins drove in a run in the third with an opposite field single to give the Rockies the lead, 4-3.Barmes hit a solo homer to left with one out in the fourth inning to make it a 5-3.The Pirates chased De La Rosa in the sixth when they cut the lead to 5-4. Robinson Diaz reached on a fielders' choice and moved to second when catcher Paul Phillips threw a pickoff attempt into right field. De La Rosa walked Jack Wilson and allowed an RBI single to pinch-hitter Brandon Moss.
McCutchen has a 10-game hitting streak. ... The Pirates had their NL-leading 19th triple of the year. ... The Rockies have won five straight series including four sweeps. ... Colorado is 14-8 against the NL Central Division and with 16 wins this month the Rockies have had the most successful June in franchise history. ... Seth Smith is hitting .455 (10-for-22) as a pinch-hitter.