The Colorado Rockies got what they needed from starter Alex White. They cant say the same about their offense.
White threw seven effective innings, a rare feat by a Colorado starter this year, but it wasnt enough against the Seattle Mariners.
Kevin Millwood tossed a two-hitter for his first shutout in nearly nine years, and Mike Carp hit a solo homer, helping the Mariners snap a four-game skid with a 4-0 win Friday night.
We got a very competitive effort from Alex White; unfortunately the Mariners got a tremendous effort from Kevin Millwood, Rockies manager Jim Tracy said.
Millwood (2-4) comfortably cruised through this game and didnt surrender his first hit until Marco Scutaros single with two outs in the sixth. He struck out seven and walked one. He didnt allow a runner to reach third until the ninth inning but got Carlos Gonzalez to line out to end the game.
After averaging 10 hits per game over the last three, the Rockies found them hard to come by against their former teammate.
He was making his pitches. It wasnt like we were hitting a bunch of hard balls, Scutaro said. He was banging the corners, and he had late movement.
White (0-3) was the hard-luck loser, dropping his sixth consecutive start in a dubious string that dates back to Sept. 16. After struggling early, White settled into a groove. He gave up three runs two earned and seven hits in seven solid innings.
Thats alright. My job is to keep the team in the game, get deep in the ballgame and give us a chance to win, White said. Thats what I tried to do, but Millwood was good (Friday).
The Rockies hoped to get healthy on this five-game homestand but have lost two of their first three and 12 of 16 in May. Theyve slipped to a season-low eight games below .500 but the players arent giving up hope.
I think were close to going on a run, and it starts with our pitching staff,;it starts with the starters keeping the team in the game, White said. We have a great offense, theyre going to get going and score us some runs.
Its May, its still mid-May; theres a lot of the season left. If you look down this lineup we have a great team, and well put it together.
After bouncing around, Millwood finally may have found a home with the Mariners.
The journeyman pitcher shuffled around the minor leagues with the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox for much of last season. He joined the Rockies rotation last August in an emergency situation, when Juan Nicasio was lost for the year after taking a line drive to the right temple and suffering a fractured skull along with a neck injury.
Millwood wound up 4-3 wearing Colorados purple pinstripes.
He once again had to prove himself this season, signing a minor league contract with Seattle. He started winless in his first six games this season before beating the Yankees last Sunday.
He flirted with a no-hitter Friday, giving up his only two hits in the sixth inning. The first was on Scutaros chopper that Seager couldnt snare in the hole between third and short. Jordan Pacheco followed with a single up the middle, but Scutaro was thrown out by Michael Saunders as he tried to advance to third.
It was a bad play by me, Scutaro said. I have to make sure to be safe. I thought I had a chance, but Ive got to be smart on that.
Millwood already has one no-hitter under his belt as he bottled up the San Francisco Giants in a 1-0 win on April 27, 2003, when he was with the Philadelphia Phillies.
Relying on a 91-mph fastball and an effective slider, Millwood baffled the Rockies all evening.
He pounded the strike zone all night. He pitched ahead all night, Tracy said. He used maybe a handful of curveballs, basically did it with a fastball. Used his slider effectively. When you pitch ahead all night long you get defensive swings.
Carp hit his third homer of the season in the second, a towering shot to the deepest part of the park. Kyle Seager had an RBI single and drove in another on a sacrifice fly. John Jaso added an insurance run the ninth by bringing in Seager on a sac fly.
The Mariners improved to 2-6 on their 10-game, four-city road swing.
A nifty slide by Ichiro Suzuki in the sixth staked the Mariners to a 3-0 lead, which was more than enough for Millwood. The speedy Suzuki got a good jump as he tagged on Seagers shallow fly. Although Gonzalezs throw was on target and arrived about the same time Suzuki managed to avoid Wilin Rosarios tag before slapping his hand on the plate.
The Mariners scratched out a run in the first when Saunders laced a triple into the right-center gap and was brought in when Seager blooped a single center.