LOS ANGELES -- Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, whose bases-loaded soft fly ball Saturday night ended a golden opportunity in his team's 2-1 loss to the Dodgers, dropped from fourth to fifth in the lineup on Sunday."I'm not where I want to be or where I need to be," Tulowitzki said. "It really stinks that we're not hitting well, and when you have that one at-bat like I did with the bases loaded, I need to make sure I get a hit right there. Sometimes you don't, but that's just the way it is. On another day you wouldn't even look at that." But this is a time for scrutiny for all of the Rockies, Tulowitzki included. Tulowitzki has actually hit safely in 16 of the last 19 games. But at-bats like Saturday's -- on a night when he went 0-for-4 with four fly balls, only one truly driven -- attract more attention. Manager Jim Tracy said he dropped Tulowitzki and moved Michael Cuddyer to the cleanup spot mainly to give Tulowitzki a chance to step back. It didn't work. In Sunday's 11-5 loss to the Dodgers, Tulowitzki went 0-for-4 with three fly balls. That made him 1-for-12 in the three-game sweep, with fly balls for nine of those outs.
Tulowitzki is 3-for-36 against left-handed pitching this season, after hitting .349 against lefties last season. Tracy said side-by-side video of Tulowitzki on Saturday against his home run off Astros lefty Fernando Abad in the season opener shows that Tulowitzki is forcing power instead of reacting to pitches.
"I'll just take the onus off Tulo for a couple of days, just to see how it goes," Tracy said.With first baseman Todd Helton resting on Sunday, the normal lineup would have had Cuddyer hitting fifth, so he is just moving up one spot. It's not as if either hitter has a good history against Dodgers left-handed starter Ted Lilly, who has made a career of dominating the Rockies. Cuddyer entered with a .167 (2-for-12) average and three strikeouts but one home run and a double against Lilly. Tulowitzki entered hitting .138 (4-for-29) with a double, 11 strikeouts and one walk in 29 at-bats against Lilly.
Fowler hit by throw, exits with blurred vision
LOS ANGELES -- Rockies center fielder Dexter Fowler acknowledged having trouble focusing after being hit in the head by a throw during the fourth inning of Sunday afternoon's 11-5 loss to the Dodgers. Fowler left the game with blurred vision.Fowler was on first base after a walk and Rockies pitcher Alex White bunted a pitch from Dodgers left-hander Ted Lilly on a sacrifice attempt. Dodgers cacher A.J. Ellis tried to cut down Fowler, but the throw hit him where the bill connects with the side of the batting helmet. Fowler took third on the error. "My eyes, every time I picked up something it would be spotty and blurred, but it's fine," Fowler said after the game. Rockies head athletic trainer Keith Dugger attended to Fowler on the field. Fowler stayed in the game long enough to score on Marco Scutaro's single. Before the bottom of the fifth, Rockies manager Jim Tracy moved Tyler Colvin from first base to center field and put Jordan Pacheco into the game at first. There was no immediate announcement from the Rockies on the extent of Fowler's injury. Fowler has a .221 batting average and has begun losing playing time in center to Colvin. On Sunday, Fowler started because Colvin moved to first base to accommodate a day off given to Todd Helton. Also, backup first baseman Jason Giambi, battling a sore right foot, did not play.
Scutaro, Cuddyer pick up RBIs with pink bats
LOS ANGELES -- A hard-luck hitter for much of this season, Rockies second baseman Marco Scutaro said he doesn't mind using any bat if it would improve his fortune.Louisville Slugger isn't his usual brand of choice, but the deep pink bat the company provided on Mother's Day to raise breast cancer awareness ended up working for him. The Rockies' leadoff man lashed two hits and drove in a run -- his second RBI of the season -- in the 11-5 loss to the Dodgers. "I swing everybody's bats," Scutaro said. "So I decided I'd give those a try."
Michael Cuddyer, who went 1-for-3 with an RBI with a pink bat, said players have so enthusiastically taken to the awareness program, not only swinging pink bats but wearing pink wristbands and other equipment, that the program should be extended to other cancer awareness initiatives."I'd like to swing a blue bat on Father's Day for prostate cancer awareness, and later in the year there's an awareness program for childhood cancer," Cuddyer said. "I don't know of a single person that hasn't been touched by cancer in their lives."
Rox not alarmed by De La Rosa's tight forearm
LOS ANGELES -- The Rockies believe the left forearm tightness that pitcher Jorge De La Rosa experienced during a rehab start Saturday night at Double-A Tulsa is a normal part of recovery from Tommy John elbow surgery. He will be watched for the next couple of days before the Rockies determine the next step.De La Rosa, who suffered the injury last May, is scheduled for three more rehab stats -- Thursday for Tulsa and May 22 and 27 for Triple-A Colorado Springs. That would mean a return to the Majors on June 2 against the Dodgers at Coors Field. However, if the tightness is too much of a delay in his program, the Rockies could recall him to the Majors, place him on the 15-day disabled list for the tightness and have another 30-day rehab window. De La Rosa, who had made two starts at Class A Advanced Modesto, threw 28 pitches and gave up five hits and four runs in Tulsa's game against Arkansas, then was pulled as a precaution after consulting with a trainer. Rockies head athletic trainer Keith Dugger said the tightness was in the mid-to-lower forearm, so it isn't in the area of the surgery. "You expect these types of bumps coming through rehab," Dugger said. "Is this a new injury? No. It's just a little inflammation, a little tightness, especially when you start upping the intensity and going against higher-level teams." Dugger also said De La Rosa has begun swinging a bat lately, and sometimes that can lead to forearm tightness when recovering from elbow surgery. Rockies manager Jim Tracy said it's somewhat a surprise De La Rosa had not experienced a setback before now. "You're thinking there might be something here or there," Tracy said. "But you know that there's going to be something that comes up that suggests it's all part of this rehab process." Even when De La Rosa returns to the Majors, the Rockies will closely monitor his innings, pitch count, the intensity of the innings and the length of innings.
X-rays revealed no break in the right foot of Rockies first baseman Jason Giambi, who fouled a pitch off the foot Wednesday before hitting a double against the Padres. Giambi didn't start on Sunday but was available for pinch-hit duty. Utility man Eric Young Jr. was sent to the team's complex in Scottsdale, Ariz., on Sunday for three days to work back into condition. Young was on the MLB bereavement list from May 5 through Saturday, as his grandfather died after a stroke. The bereavement period expired Saturday, but the Rockies were able to move Young to the restricted list so they don't have to send him into action without having some preparation. Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario, who went 1-for-2 with a double Saturday night, has nine extra-base hits among his 12 total hits this season. His .580 slugging percentage went into Sunday leading National League rookies with at least 50 plate appearances.
Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.