Rosario's pinch homer lifts Colorado over Milwaukee in 10
MILWAUKEE (AP) Wilin Rosario was poised to make his first start of the year when he was scratched just before game time.
He still left his mark with a pinch-hit homer in the 10th inning to lift the Colorado Rockies to a 5-4 win over the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday night.
Rosario initially was in the batting order in place of Justin Morneau, who was hit in the neck by a ball while running the bases Tuesday night. Morneau took batting practice and talked his way into the lineup, sending Rosario to the bench for the third straight game.
The big right-hander, however, hit a full-count pitch from Milwaukee closer Francisco Rodriguez (0-1) over the wall in center field, giving the Rockies a three-game sweep in the season-opening series.
''I just want to be positive,'' Rosario said. ''I want to play every day, but I want to be focused. I want to win. I want what's best for the team.''
Rodriguez threw a pair of strikes to Rosario and then three consecutive balls before giving up the go-ahead homer.
''In that situation you cannot walk people, especially with the top of the order coming up and the way they hit the ball,'' Rodriguez said. ''You have to try to find a way to get him out instead of putting him on base. He got a good pitch to hit and he got hot.''
Colorado closer LaTroy Hawkins (1-0) got the win despite giving up a pair of runs in the ninth to send the game into extra innings.
John Axford, who had 106 saves for the Brewers from 2009-13, pitched the 10th to earn his first save for Colorado after signing as a non-roster invitee during the offseason.
''We've got guys off the bench who are still locked in,'' Axford said about Rosario's heroics. ''He won us the ballgame.''
The Brewers forced extra innings when pinch-hitter Ryan Braun hit a weak RBI dribbler that stopped before third base for a single, scoring Gerardo Parra without a play and bringing the Brewers to 4-3. Carlos Gomez then singled in Jean Segura.
Carlos Gonzalez, whose 2014 season was marred by injuries, hit a two-run homer in the eighth to give Colorado a 4-2 lead.
Adam Lind hit a two-run home run for Milwaukee in the third inning. Lind is 6 for 10 with three walks in three games.
Corey Dickerson hit a solo home run, his second, on an 0-2 pitch from Peralta to tie the score 2-2 with one out in the seventh.
DEDICATED TO JAMESON
Axford's son, Jameson, is hospitalized after being bitten by a rattlesnake at the family's home in Arizona during spring training. ''I don't usually have dedications to make but this save was dedicated to Jameson. (Catcher Nick) Hundley even yelled that this one is for Jameson.''
GONZALEZ OPENS STRONG
Gonzalez is 5 for 13 with three doubles and a homer to open the season. Last year, he batted only .238 with 11 home runs and 38 RBIs in 70 games. ''It feels great,'' he said. ''I'm putting a good swing on the ball.''
Colorado starter Eddie Butler was about to throw his third pitch of the game in the first to Gomez when the fireworks went off in center field for about 10 seconds. Butler held up, Gomez stepped out of the batter's box while laughing until the display ended. Gomez ended up walking, but was erased on a double play.
Rockies: Morneau had a history of concussions, but had no concussion symptoms after being struck with the ball on Tuesday night.
Brewers: Braun was held out of the starting lineup for the second straight game while recovering from a strain in his right side. He took batting practice, but felt some discomfort, Roenicke said.
Rockies: The team will work out at Coors Field on Thursday in preparation for Friday's home opener against the Chicago Cubs. Left-hander Tyler Matzek will start for the Rockies against the Cubs.
Brewers: The team hosts the Pirates in a three-game series beginning Friday. Milwaukee won 12 of 19 against Pittsburgh last year but finished six games behind them in the standings. Mike Fiers will start for the Brewers.