Díaz’s HR, Freeland’s arm key Rockies’ 2-0 win over Pirates | VailDaily.com

Díaz’s HR, Freeland’s arm key Rockies’ 2-0 win over Pirates

Dennis Georgatos
The Associated Press
From left, Rockies left fielder Raimel Tapia, center fielder Yonathan Daza and right fielder Charlie Blackmon celebrate after the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Pirates Monday in Denver. The Rockies won, 2-0.
David Zalubowski/AP

DENVER — Kyle Freeland pitched five scoreless innings before leaving with an apparent leg injury suffered while running the bases, Elías Díaz homered and the Colorado Rockies beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 2-0 on Monday.

Yonathan Daza had an RBI triple and an over-the-shoulder catch of Erik Gonzalez’s deep flyball to the center field warning track in a game dubbed “Opening Day 2.0” after the lifting of all pandemic-induced attendance restrictions at 50,000-seat Coors Field.

The Pirates had six hits, all singles. Four Colorado relievers worked an inning each, with Daniel Bard getting the last three outs for his 11th save in 16 chances.

Freeland (1-2) allowed three hits and struck out seven in his seventh start of the season. He missed the first two months with a shoulder strain suffered in spring training.

Freeland reached on pitcher Tyler Anderson’s fielding error in the bottom of the fifth and apparently injured his leg sliding into third base on Daza’s double.

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Anderson (3-8) went five innings and allowed two runs on five hits — including Díaz’s third homer of the season, a solo shot in the fifth — against his former team. Anderson has lost his last five decisions.

Back to normal

The “re-opening” pageantry included a flyover by four Air Force fighter jets, pregame introductions for both teams and the return of tossing of bags of peanuts into the crowd from an upper-deck radio booth during the seventh-inning stretch. It was the first game without restricted attendance at Coors Field since Sept. 29, 2019, against the Milwaukee Brewers.

Derby story

The Rockies will have hometown entrant in the Home Run Derby. Trevor Story confirmed his participation in the July 12 competition being staged at hitter-friendly Coors Field, also the site of the All-Star Game the next day. Story joins Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels, Trey Mancini of the Baltimore Orioles and Pete Alonso of the New York Mets as competitors in the derby. Alonso won the most recent Home Run Derby in 2019.

Trainer’s room

Pirates: 1B Colin Moran left the game as a precaution in the bottom of the first inning after being hit on the left wrist by a pitch in in the top of the inning. Ben Gamel replaced Moran in the lineup and Phillip Evans moved from left field to first base.

Rockies: RHP Robert Stephenson was placed on the 10-day injured list because of upper back tightness. LHP Ben Bowden was recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque.

Up next

Pirates: RHP Chase De Jong (0-2, 4.94) is scheduled for his sixth start of the season. He is coming off consecutive losses after getting no-decisions in his first three starts.

Rockies: RHP Germán Márquez (6-6, 3.99 ERA) is slated to make his 17th start of the season and 11th at home, where he has gone 5-1 with a 3.56 ERA.

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