SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Jorge De La Rosa struck out four in three perfect innings in his spring training debut and Nolan Arenado hit his first home run in the Colorado Rockies’ 5-4 loss to the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday.
The 34-year-old De La Rosa, his first start delayed to reduce his workload, reached 91 mph with his fastball. He struck out Eugenio Suarez on a slow curveball he’s working on and got Jordan Pacheco, Brandon Allen and Ivan De Jesus Jr. on changeups.
“My command was really good today,” De La Rosa said. “I’ve been throwing live (batting practice) all this time, so I was ready to throw three.”
Arenado singled and homered off starter Brandon Finnegan. Arenado, who also made a nifty backhand play at third and strong throw to start a double play, is 8 for 16 in six games.
Finnegan allowed two runs, five hits and a walk while getting eight outs.
Scott Schebler had an RBI single off Chatwood in the fourth for the Reds, who scored three runs in the ninth.
Charlie Blackmon and D.J LeMahieu had RBI singles for the Rockies. Tyler Chatwood gave up one run and two hits in two innings in his second appearance since Tommy John surgery.
Reds: Finnegan, a rotation candidate making his third appearance and second start, allowed at least two runners in all three innings. He threw 37 of 59 pitches for strikes and made a fielding error.
“His ball was up a little bit and he just wasn’t as sharp,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “By the last inning his velocity was down and it just didn’t look like it was coming out the same.”
Rockies: De La Rosa, the closest the Rockies have to an ace, is the franchise career leader with 78 wins and 877 strikeouts.
The lefty threw 27 of 41 pitches for strikes and successfully covered first base twice for putouts. He was slowed by a nagging groin injury last year.
“I stretched myself really good today and I didn’t feel anything,” De La Rosa said.
Reds: RF Jesse Winker left as a precaution with a bruised leg after colliding with teammate Jake Cave while catching Arenado’s deep fly to right-center in the fifth. . OF Billy Hamilton (shoulder surgery) played catch in the morning workout.
Rockies: LHP Boone Logan (elbow) will throw live batting practice Friday. He’s yet to appear in a game. . LHP Chris Rusin (finger) played catch and is nearing a return. . RHP Jairo Diaz’s elbow reconstruction surgery has been scheduled for March 18 in Denver.
Pacheco went 0 for 3 while starting at first base, his fifth position in seven games.
The 30-year-old Pacheco, who spent parts of eight seasons in the Colorado organization, has also played catcher, second, third and left field in his first spring with Cincinnati.
The Rockies sent nine players to minor league camp, including OF prospect David Dahl and RHP Jeff Hoffman. Also sent down: RHP Matt Carasiti; LHPs Kyle Freeland and Harrison Musgrave; Cs Dom Nunez and Will Swanner; INF Ryan McMahon and OF Rosell Herrera.
Reds: RHP Jon Moscot faces Oakland and RHP Robert Stephenson starts against the Chicago Cubs in Friday split-squad games.
Rockies: RHP Chad Betttis makes his spring training debut Friday against Cleveland.