DENVER – Ubaldo Jimenez did pretty much everything he could to get the Colorado Rockies their ninth straight win.
Jimenez pitched the second complete game of his career and had an RBI single to help the Colorado Rockies extend their winning streak with a 6-4 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Friday night.
“He was in the middle of everything,” Colorado Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. “He did it with his bat, with a couple of terrific bunts and then the slug bunt that set up the inning when we took the lead.”
The Rockies’ franchise record is 11 consecutive wins from Sept. 16-27, 2007.
Jimenez (5-6) allowed four runs and eight hits and struck out three.
“I am improving in every aspect of the game,” Jimenez said. “In the last couple of years if I started a game like that allowing two or three runs, I would be down. I wouldn’t have been able to get out of the fifth inning, but now I have a little confidence.”
Troy Tulowitzki had a home run and Dexter Fowler drove in a run with a squeeze bunt for the Rockies, who are 11-4 since manager Jim Tracy took over for Clint Hurdle on May 29.
Adrian Beltre drove in two runs with a double and Russell Branyan hit his 15th homer for the Mariners, who had won four of five.
“Offensively I thought we did a pretty good job,” Seattle manager Don Wakamatsu said. “Jimenez, clear up until some of the last pitches, was throwing 97 mph. That’s not an easy guy to face.”
Jarrod Washburn (3-5) allowed five runs, four earned, and six hits in six innings.
Branyan hit a 1-2 breaking ball into the Colorado bullpen in right-center with one out in the first inning to give Seattle a 1-0 lead.
The Mariners made it 3-0 in the third inning on Beltre’s bases-loaded double. Washburn reached on a fielder’s choice, Ichiro Suzuki singled and Branyan drew a walk ahead of Beltre’s drive off the left-field wall one out.
Colorado got two runs back in its half of the third on Todd Helton’s two-out RBI single and on a throwing error by Washburn that pulled Branyan off the bag at first and allowed Clint Barmes to score.
Rob Johnson’s RBI double over Ryan Spilborghs in left-center made it 4-2 in the fourth.
Tulowitzki homered to straightaway center in the bottom half.
Washburn walked Tulowitzki and hit Ian Stewart to start the sixth and one out later Jimenez, a .263 hitter, slapped a single past Branyan at first to score Tulowitzki and tie the game at 4.
“I saw the shortstop breaking to third base, so we had a play if we ever see the shortstop breaking, you pull the bat and swing,” Jimenez said. “It was the first time I’d ever seen the shortstop breaking, so I did it and it worked.”
The Rockies loaded the bases, but Washburn got out of further trouble by retiring Helton and Brad Hawpe.
“The most frustrating part was the walks,” Washburn said. “The base hits don’t hurt me if I don’t put guys on base by walking them or hitting them.”
The Rockies got an unearned run in the seventh inning off Miguel Batista to make it 6-4. Tulowitzki walked, stole second and moved to third when catcher Rob Johnson threw the ball into center field and scored on Batista’s wild pitch.
Left-hander Erik Bedard will miss his start for Seattle today with left shoulder inflammation. … Right-hander Brandon Morrow will make the start and will be limited to 60 pitches. … Ken Griffey Jr. will make his fourth start in the outfield this season today. … Colorado brought left-hander Franklin Morales back from his rehab assignment and optioned him to Triple-A Colorado Springs.
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