Anderson tosses 6 strong innings as Rockies beat Cubs, 5-2
DENVER — Tyler Anderson has had plenty of success on the mound in his young career, so he was happy to contribute at the plate.
And he didn’t need to swing to help the Colorado Rockies rebound against the Chicago Cubs.
Anderson pitched six strong innings and drew a key walk in a five-run fifth inning that led the Rockies to a 5-2 win over Chicago on Saturday night.
Nolan Arenado had two hits to pace Colorado, which won despite not hitting a home run. The Rockies’ 28 homers are tied for the major league lead but it was patience at the plate that gave them the win.
“That’s perfect,” Gerardo Parra said. “We don’t need a homer to win the game.”
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Anderson (1-0) got his first win in five starts and tamed a Chicago lineup that had 16 runs on 18 hits in the series opener on Friday night. The Cubs managed just six hits on the night, two from Albert Almora Jr., who had four in Friday’s win.
Wade Davis pitched the ninth for his ninth save in 10 chances.
Chicago’s offense wasn’t as potent behind starter Yu Darvish. He started strong but left with two outs in the fifth after allowing five runs on five hits and walking four.
His third walk was costly. With two outs, a man on first and Chicago leading 2-0 Darvish walked Anderson on five pitches to extend the inning.
“That was a big moment,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. “If he gets him we get out of that inning.”
DJ LeMahieu followed with an RBI double and Parra hit a two-run single up the middle to give Colorado a 3-2 lead.
Charlie Blackmon walked, Arenado drove in another run with a single and Trevor Story’s RBI double made it 5-2 and chased Darvish.
“That’s a big situation with two outs where a lot of times, personally, I make that out and the inning’s over,” Anderson said. “To be able to extend it and get DJ back to the plate and get our offense going, it’s nice not to be the out there that ends the inning.”
Darvish was cruising through Colorado’s lineup before the walk to Anderson. The Rockies were hitless before Arenado’s two-out single in the fourth.
“I was going to throw strikes in there against the pitcher and it turned out my command wasn’t there so I had the walk,” Darvish said through a translator.
For the second straight night the Cubs grabbed a quick lead. Almora and Javier Baez led off with singles and scored on a double by Wilson Contreras to make it 2-0.
Anderson settled down after that and worked out of trouble in the third. The Cubs had runners at first and third with one out but Anderson got struggling Anthony Rizzo to pop out to second and Contreras to fly out to center.
Cubs: INF/OF Ben Zobrist was placed on the 10-day disabled list with back tightness, retroactive to Thursday. The Cubs recalled David Bote from Triple-A Iowa, and he made his major league debut at third base.
Rockies: OF Carlos Gonzalez was out for the second straight game with a sore right hamstring suffered in Wednesday’s game in Pittsburgh. He is not expected to land on the disabled list but he was given an extra day off in the cold weather.
Bote didn’t have to fly in family to see him make his debut, they simply had to drive about 10 miles to see him man third base. Bote grew up in Longmont, Colo., 28 miles northwest of Coors Field, and makes his home in Thornton, just north of Denver.
“I love that he’s from down the street,” Maddon said before the game. “I’m really happy that he gets to make his debut right here. His family can see it. It’s awesome. I told him to just try to enjoy it.”
He doubled to the gap in right-center field on the second pitch he saw in the big leagues but was thrown out trying to steal third to end the second inning.
“I was just like, ‘Man did this happen? Did that really just happen?’” Bote said of his double. “Just seeing my teammates on the top step cheering was really a cool moment.”
Bote’s father, Bob, who is a renowned prep baseball coach in Colorado, and mother were in the stands.
“It was special,” Bote said. “Just to see his journey through everything, and my journey through it all. It’s probably pretty rewarding. I can’t wait to see him and give him a big hug.”
The Cubs will send LHP Jose Quintana (1-1, 8.16) against Colorado RHP German Marquez (1-1, 4.34) in the series finale on Sunday afternoon.
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The teams aren’t vying to one up the other in the rankings or looking to get a leg up in the league standings this fall, but that will hardly make the stakes any less meaningful for Basalt and Glenwood Springs high schools when they meet on the football field Friday night.