DENVER (AP) — Back spasms forced an early exit by Shelby Miller but it doesn't appear the St. Louis Cardinals pitcher will miss more time, a relief for a rotation hit by a spate of injuries.
Miller was overtaken by back spasms in the third inning Tuesday night as the Colorado Rockies snapped a seven-game losing streak by beating the Cardinals 10-5. Justin Morneau did most of the damage, hitting a three-run homer and driving in six runs.
"Whenever anybody comes out of a game, you're concerned, but this looks like one that maybe we'll be able to head off at the pass," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "They seemed to be pretty confident that he would have a good chance to be ready to go for his next start."
That would help a Cardinals rotation that lost Michael Wacha (right shoulder stress reaction) and Jamie Garcia (left shoulder inflammation) to the disabled list on Sunday.
Miller allowed three runs in 2 2-3 innings before being hit with spasms as he was pitching to opposing pitcher Jorge De La Rosa. It was his shortest of the season and the shortest since being lifted after two pitches against the Los Angeles Dodgers last Aug. 7.
"It's kind of like a stinger in the middle of my back and it would go up as I extended my arm," Miller said. "It was weird. I'll come in tomorrow, take care of it early (with treatment) and be ready for my next one. I felt it a little bit before in warmups. I just never really got loose, I guess."
De La Rosa (7-6) allowed five runs, four earned, in seven innings. He is the first Rockies starter to earn a win since June 12.
Nick Greenwood (1-1) pitched 1 2-3 innings in relief of Miller.
Morneau had an RBI single in the first and a two-run single in the seventh that gave Colorado some breathing room.
The Rockies finished with 17 hits one night after managing just three when they were shut out at home for the first time in nearly a year.
Jhonny Peralta hit a two-run homer for St. Louis and Matt Holliday had another productive day at Coors Field against his former team, going 2 for 5. He is hitting .545 in his last five games at this park.
De La Rosa finished strong, striking out Allen Craig to end the seventh with Holliday on first.
St. Louis had something brewing in the eighth with the bases loaded and two outs. But Adam Ottavino struck out pinch-hitter Jon Jay to end the threat.
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