Pomeranz sharp in debut, Rockies beat Reds 4-1 - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Pomeranz sharp in debut, Rockies beat Reds 4-1

DENVER (AP) -

Prized prospect Drew Pomeranz threw five shutout innings in his major league debut and Ty Wigginton homered, helping the Colorado Rockies to a 4-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday.

Pomeranz (1-0) was a key piece in the deal that sent ace Ubaldo Jimenez to Cleveland at the trade deadline. He showed why the Rockies coveted him, allowing just two singles.

The 21-year-old lefty threw only 63 pitches before leaving in the fifth. Pomeranz is three weeks removed from an emergency appendectomy.

Edinson Volquez (5-5) was effective in his first start since July 5, not allowing a hit until Wigginton's homer to left in the fourth. He later gave up an RBI single to Jordan Pacheco.

Wigginton wasn't in the original starting lineup. But when Carlos Gonzalez was scratched with lower back stiffness, Wigginton went in to play left field.

Jason Hammel, a starter turned reliever, pitched four innings to earn his first save of the season. He allowed a solo homer to Joey Votto in the ninth.

Pomeranz hasn't pitched all that much since he was acquired in the five-player deal with the Indians in late July. Because a drafted player can't be traded within a year of his signing,Pomeranz wasn't allowed to join the Rockies organization until Aug. 17. He made a start for Double-A Tulsa that night, throwing seven scoreless innings.

A few days later, he underwent an appendectomy that slowed his promotion to the big leagues.

Upon his return, Pomeranz threw three scoreless innings for Tulsa last week before having his contract selected by the Rockies on Sunday.

Although Pomeranz wasn't overpowering, he kept the Reds off balance with an effective changeup and a 91 mph fastball.

And when Pomeranz found himself in trouble early, he found a way to wiggle free by getting the Reds to ground into double plays in the second and third innings.

This was precisely the type of performance Rockies manager Jim Tracy envisioned from Pomeranz. Tracy caught a glimpse of him during spring training and was instantly intrigued, even asking around about the pitcher who was hitting around 95 mph with his fastball.

"That's how much he jumped out at me," Tracy said.

Volquez, Cincinnati's opening-day starter, has bounced around between the Reds and Triple-A Louisville this season in an effort to find his command.

The right-hander walked four and struck out three against Colorado.

Chris Valaika had both hits off Pomeranz before leaving in the fifth with an undisclosed injury. Votto and Chris Heisey had the only other hits for the Reds as the team wrapped up a 4-5 road trip.

The banged-up Rockies went with a patchwork lineup, with All-Star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki (sore hip), first baseman Todd Helton (stiff back) and second baseman Mark Ellis (neck) all sitting out.

With an off day Monday, Tracy said he's hopeful Tulowitzki will be back in the lineup Tuesday in Milwaukee.

Starting in place of Tulowitzki was Thomas Field, who made his major league debut after having his contract selected from Tulsa. He drew a walk his first time up but finished without a hit.

Helton has played sparingly over the last 10 days because of a bothersome back. Ellis sat out as a precaution after being hit in the neck by a pitch Saturday.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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