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Cuddyer extends hitting streak but Rockies lose

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MICHAEL KELLY | June 27, 2013 10:48 PM EST | AP


DENVER — Michael Cuddyer ranks first in the Colorado Rockies record book. He would rather be first in the NL West standings.

Cuddyer had three singles to extend his hitting streak to a franchise-record 24 games, but the bullpen couldn't hold a one-run lead late and the New York Mets rallied for a 3-2 win Thursday.

Wilin Rosario had two hits for Colorado, which is within four games of first-place Arizona despite losing eight of its last 10.

The only bright spot in the recent slide is Cuddyer's streak. He entered the game tied with Dante Bichette before breaking the team mark with a single to center off Jeremy Hefner on a hot afternoon.

"Anytime you can put your name in any type of record book for a good thing is a good thing," Cuddyer said. "I'd trade it for a win, though."

Colorado appeared headed to one when New York touched up struggling reliever Matt Belisle.

With the Mets trailing 2-1 and a runner on, Marlon Byrd drove a fastball from Belisle (4-5) into the left-center seats. That was about the extent of the offense for New York with star slugger David Wright receiving a rare rest. Hefner drove in the team's other run on a groundout.

"A mistake fastball. Up to that point I felt in control of the (at-bat). I just elevated a heater," said Belisle, who has an 8.44 ERA in June. "Maybe a few too many in a row and he had good timing on it. Mainly the location. It was a mistake pitch and I cost us."

LaTroy Hawkins (3-1) earned the win with a scoreless seventh and Bobby Parnell closed for his 14th save in 17 chances.

The Rockies had two rallies snuffed out when players were thrown out on the basepaths.

In the eighth, DJ Lemahieu was picked off trying to steal second. Cuddyer led off the ninth with a single to right but was thrown out by Byrd trying to stretch it to a double.

"He's playing no doubles, which means he's playing back, trying not to get a ball hit over his head," Cuddyer said. "He wasn't running after the ball particularly hard, so I thought I had a read. It took a perfect throw to get me and kudos to him, he made it."

Rockies manager Walt Weiss was fine with his players taking chances on the basepaths.

"We had a couple of guys trying to force the issue. DJ thought he had something and went first move on a left-hander," he said. "They made a couple of good throws to get him. Cuddy same thing. Trying to force the issue and it didn't work out."

The loss spoiled a solid outing from starter Tyler Chatwood, who took a no-hit bid into the fifth before it was broken up by Zach Lutz, one of four hits the Mets managed off the right-hander.

Chatwood threw a season-high 103 pitches, and his best may have been his last when he struck out Juan Lagares looking on a 92 mph fastball with the bases loaded in the sixth.

Earlier in that inning, Chatwood took a line drive off his right leg. After a few warmup pitches, he remained in the game.

"It's stiff but I'll be fine," he said. "It hit me right in the muscle, so it just tightened up a bit."

New York loaded the bases with none out in the fifth, but Chatwood was able to work out of the sticky situation, giving up only one run on a fielder's choice by Hefner. Left fielder Carlos Gonzalez ended the threat with a sliding catch in foul territory.

The weather was drastically different from the Mets' trip to town in mid-April, when the temperature barely crept above 28 degrees and heavy snow blanketed the area. The series opener was postponed, forcing a frosty doubleheader the next day. The game on April 17 was called off, too, leading to New York's quick detour to Denver on Thursday after a two-game series in Chicago with the White Sox.

This time, the weather was 95 degrees with barely a cloud in the sky.

The Rockies scored twice in the second, when Cuddyer led off with a single and went to third on Rosario's double. Todd Helton hit a sacrifice fly, and Rosario later scored on a throwing error by first baseman Josh Satin.

That was all the offense the Rockies could muster.

"We've got to put that game away," Weiss said.

New York had two former Rockies batting 1-2 in the order in Eric Young Jr. and Omar Quintanilla. Young was acquired by the Mets last week from Colorado after he was designated for assignment.

Young received a round of applause from the crowd in his first plate appearance. He's long been a fan favorite, especially since his dad played in the Mile High City.

"When they told me, it was a little bit of a shock," Young said before the game. "But I understand the business. I'm excited to get a chance to play back here so soon, to see my guys."

NOTES: The Rockies signed INF Reid Brignac to a minor league deal. ... Cuddyer has reached base in 43 straight games, a team record. The previous mark was 41 set by Andres Galarraga and matched by Helton. Both of those, though, were over the course of two seasons. ... Rockies SS Troy Tulowitzki (broken rib) has started playing some light catch. He said the next step is to start swinging a bat. ... Rockies LHP Rex Brothers pitched the ninth and has compiled 31 straight scoreless outings (covering 29 innings) dating to April 10 at San Francisco.