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STL@COL: Rutledge cuts into lead with solo shot

DENVER -- Former Rockie Matt Holliday turned on the seventh-inning offering from Matt Belisle, shooting it high and deep, where it disappeared into the rain and over the left-field wall.

Just like that, the Rockies' shot at snapping their losing skid vanished.

"The big man hit the big blow," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. "That's it."

The 9-6 loss on Wednesday night at Coors Field -- delayed one hour and 27 minutes between the seventh and eighth innings because of rain -- was a tough one. Not only did the Rockies have a chance before Holliday mashed his second homer of the game; they had a lead, their first in what felt like a long, long time.

Four consecutive extra-base hits in the bottom of the sixth did the trick as the Rockies were able to turn a 3-1 deficit into a 5-3 lead.

Andrew Brown -- who grounded into double plays in his first two at-bats -- led off the inning with a double to right. Jordan Pacheco followed suit, doubling in Brown. Tyler Colvin then hit his second triple of the game. Ramon Hernandez added a double to deep center.

"That's the way we've been all year, we're always fighting, always battling," Colvin said. "It's one of those things we expect out of each other."

After two groundouts followed the four extra-base hits, Eric Young lifted a ball over the head of right fielder Carlos Beltran. Ramon Hernandez scored, and Young rounded second as Beltran made the throw to the cutoff man, who fired to David Freese at third base.

Young, had he slid, would have been safe. But third-base coach Rich Dauer had his arms up, signaling to Young that he didn't need to, so Young stayed upright and Freese tagged him out, ending the inning and the rally.

"Anytime there's a question mark, it's on me," Young said. "I should have slid."

Said Freese, "I don't think I've ever accomplished a deke like that before, in the big leagues at least. It looked like a good opportunity. Carlos got it in quick. [Tyler] Greene made a heck of a throw. I said, 'Why not? Let's try it.' The best part about it was that it ended the inning. It stopped the rally."

Left-handed reliever Rex Brothers (5-3) entered the game and issued a leadoff walk and a single in the seventh. Brothers then struck out Allen Craig before giving way to the right-handed Belisle against Holliday.

Holliday, who is 13-for-24 with five homers and 16 RBIs against his former team this season, homered on a 1-0 fastball from Belisle for his second homer of the game.

"I knew we had a runner in scoring position, and I was just trying to get something that I could hit hard," Holliday said. "I have a lot of fond memories here, and I think when you've had success in places you tend to have confidence going back."

Rockies starter Drew Pomeranz went four innings, giving up Holliday's two-run homer in the first and an RBI double by Greene, which left fielder Carlos Gonzalez reached over the fence to keep from being a homer, in the second.

"I obviously didn't have my best stuff today, but that's part of pitching," Pomeranz said. "The homer hurt, but I pitched well after that."

He cruised through the third and worked out of trouble in the fourth before a high pitch count (72) and the top of the Cardinals' lineup coming around again forced Tracy's hand.

"[Pomeranz] was a little bit erratic with his command tonight," Tracy said. "Have I seen better from him? Yeah. Tonight he was spraying it around a little bit. But he got the outs he needed to get [in the third and fourth innings]."

Coors Field turned into a mini Busch Stadium once the rain delay passed, with red-clad Cardinals fans filling out the sections behind each dugout.

They cheered when Yadier Molina singled up the middle off Matt Reynolds in the eighth, clapped when Jon Jay advanced him to second on a sacrifice bunt, booed when Reynolds intentionally walked pinch-hitter Lance Berkman and roared when Molina came home on a wild pitch to pad the lead to 7-5.

The Cards added two more runs in the top of the ninth, and Josh Rutledge hit a solo shot in the bottom of the inning.

Rutledge has homered in three straight games, and after going 2-for-5 on Wednesday, has multiple hits in 10 of his first 17 Major League games. He was called up July 13.

"I didn't necessarily think I'd swing the bat as well, but I've worked so hard that when they called me up, I felt like I deserved it," Rutledge said. "That's a tribute to the work I've put in."

The Rockies have lost five consecutive games, with seven straight losses at home.

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