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Yankees-Rockies Preview




MLB Sports news date: 2013-05-08,


Soggy weather is keeping Troy Tulowitzki on the bench again.

Tulowitzki won't be back in the lineup as the Colorado Rockies try to send the New York Yankees to a third consecutive shutout defeat on the road for the first time in 84 years Wednesday night.

Colorado (19-13) opened this three-game series with Tuesday's 2-0 win, as Carlos Gonzalez's two-run homer proved to be enough.

Tulowitzki, the NL's second-leading hitter with a .348 average, missed the game with lingering soreness in his left leg. The Rockies were expecting him back Wednesday, but given the damp conditions expected throughout the night, Colorado elected to play it safe and sit him out for a second straight game.

Manager Walt Weiss, trainer Keith Dugger and Tulowitzki met in Weiss' office for quite a bit before reaching the decision. Tulowitzki says he will be available to pinch hit and "hopefully come up in a big spot and get a big hit for the team."

The Rockies overcame steady rain and lightning plus the Yankees on Tuesday, and they've also dealt with snow, bitter cold and winds at Coors Field this season.

"Hopefully in two months we'll play in good weather here," said Gonzalez, also among the league leaders with a .322 average.

The left fielder has been on a tear of late, batting .429 with three doubles, three homers and six RBIs in his last seven games.

"I always have a good feeling when CarGo's in the box," Weiss said. "He can change the game with one swing."

Colorado, though, hasn't won two straight since a season-high eight-game winning streak April 12-20.

Juan Nicasio (3-0, 4.91) is expected to get a chance to change that.

The right-hander has failed to complete five innings in two of his last three starts, and he was lifted after four in last Wednesday's 7-3 road win over the Los Angeles Dodgers. He allowed three runs and five hits with two walks while throwing 92 pitches.

Nicasio didn't get a decision in his only meeting with the Yankees on June 26, 2011. He tossed four scoreless innings before giving up three runs and two homers while exiting after the fifth in a 6-4 loss at New York.

The Yankees (18-13) will try to get to Nicasio again after losing their last two road games via shutouts. They haven't been blanked in three straight away from home since Aug. 22-24, 1929.

New York, which was limited to four singles Tuesday, has dropped four of five on the road, batting .191 in those games.

"It's hard to win games when you get four hits and don't put any runs on the board," said Vernon Wells, who is 1 for 12 in his last three road games.

Robinson Cano is 0 for 8 over the past two contests away from the Bronx, but is hitting .365 as a visitor on the season.

Scoring may also be key with David Phelps (1-1, 5.56) scheduled to get a second turn in the rotation in place of Ivan Nova, who is on the disabled list with right triceps inflammation.

Phelps' first start resulted in a 5-4 win over Houston last Wednesday, but he wasted a four-run lead by surrendering that many in the top of fourth before leaving two outs in the sixth and the score tied. He also surrendered eight hits while plunking two batters.

"I know he expected more of himself but I was pretty pleased," manager Joe Girardi said.

Phelps has surrendered five runs - three earned - with five strikeouts in four innings of relief over two interleague appearances.



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