Rockies 10, Reds 6

TUCSON, Ariz. -- Ubaldo Jimenez needs to stay off the bases.

Cruising along, Jimenez was tired by a trip around the basepaths and ended up allowing three runs in 4 2/3 innings of the Colorado Rockies 10-6 win overt the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday.

"I started losing my mechanics a little bit," said Jimenez. "I started opening up (my front shoulder)."

Jimenez held the Reds hitless until Chris Burke led off the fourth with a single. But Jimenez gave up back-to-back homers to Jonny Gomes, his fifth, and Laynce Nix on 0-1 pitches to open the fifth. That was uncharacteristic of Jimenez, who allowed just 13 homers in 218 innings last season.

"That's good they happen here," he said.

After Nix's homer, Jimenez gave up a single to Ramon Hernandez, got Aaron Miles to hit into a fielder's choice and gave up a single to pinch-hitter Denis Phipps. He then walked Chris Dickerson and left after Chris Burke flied out. Jimenez threw 83 pitches -- 48 strikes.

During the Rockies seven-run third, which included a three-run homer by Troy Tulowitzki, Jimenez had an RBI single and then moved to second on a hit by Carlos Gonzalez. He advanced to third and scored on consecutive walks to Seth Smith and Todd Helton. Jimenez said he got "a little bit" tired running the bases.

Jimenez is scheduled to make his final spring start Tuesday against the Los Angeles Dodgers. He ill then have one extra day of rest before starting April 5 in Milwaukee where the Rockies begin the regular season.

In four spring games, three starts, Jimenez is 2-0 with a 3.95 ERA.

He was helped Thursday by shortstop Tulowitzki and third baseman Ian Stewart, both of whom made several nice plays as the Rockies continued their strong defense this spring.

Stewart also contributed on offense, lining a run-scoring single up the middle in the third, when the Rockies sent 13 batters to the plate.

After going 1 for 4, Stewart is hitting .342 (13 for 38) with five RBIs and four strikeouts this spring. In his first full season in the majors last year, Stewart hit 25 homers with 70 RBIs but he batted .228 with 138 strikeouts in 425 at-bats.

Stewart worked out with Rockies hitting coach Don Baylor for two days in January and as a result, feels he has shortened his swing and knows it well enough now to avoid the prolonged slides that plagued him last year.

"I've had some at-bat where I've taken the improper swing at a pitch, and I've been able to step out and feel what I did in that at-bat," Stewart said. "As opposed to last year (when) I would do that and maybe I wouldn't notice. I would just think I missed the pitch or I was late or something."

Reds starter Aaron Harang allowed nine hits and seven runs in 2 2/3 innings, throwing 72 pitches in that span. "You've got to get the (bad) games out down here," he said. "That's one of those games you chalk up as tough luck. When you don't have your good stuff, it's hard to get through it without giving up anything. They're bound to catch up with you, and they did."

Game notes
Left-handed reliever Joe Beimel, who signed a minor league contract Tuesday with the Rockies and threw batting practice Wednesday, will pitch in a minor league game Saturday. "I feel great today after throwing yesterday," Beimel said, "not even the slightest hint of soreness."... Rockies setup man Rafael Betancourt will pitch in his second Cactus League game Friday at Goodyear, Ariz., against the Cleveland Indians, who traded him to the Rockies on July 23 for two minor league pitchers. Betancourt was slowed by right shoulder inflammation this spring.