DENVER | The Colorado Rockies are at a loss for why they scuffle against teams with a losing record.
It’s a trend they just can’t seem to shake — even when they’re rolling along.
Eric Hosmer and Austin Hedges homered off Tyler Anderson and the San Diego Padres cooled off the Rockies with a 4-3 win on Tuesday night.
Colorado is 23-24 against teams below .500 and 45-33 versus those at or above .500.
“You’re reading too much into it,” Rockies catcher Chris Iannetta said. “This team is really good. We’ve been saying that all year. Their record isn’t indicative to the amount of talent they have.”
Colorado arrived home after a 5-1 trip that included a four-game sweep of Atlanta.
Still, this had potential trap game written all over it: Colorado’s streak of 46 straight contests against teams at or above .500 ended with a Padres squad that is hovering at the bottom of the NL. Over the stretch, the Rockies went 30-16 and climbed back into the thick of the NL West race.
Asked before the game if he was concerned about a letdown, Rockies manager Bud Black simply responded: “No. No concern.”
The Padres are 6-7 against the Rockies this season. Hedges had the big blow with a solo homer in the sixth, giving San Diego a 4-3 lead.
Padres left-hander Robbie Erlin (3-3) allowed three runs over five innings. He made five scoreless relief appearances against the Rockies earlier this season.
“I really like Robbie on the mound right now. He’s done a nice job,” Padres manager Andy Green said. “Thought we could’ve made a couple plays for him, probably would’ve made his day a little bit easier. Probably would’ve have kept some runs off the board for him as well. But he was efficient.”
The pivotal moment was in the eighth when the first two Rockies hitters reached on singles. DJ LeMahieu bunted them over, and the Padres intentionally walked Nolan Arenado to load the bases.
Craig Stammen then escaped the jam by striking out Trevor Story and getting Carlos Gonzalez to ground out to second baseman Christian Villanueva, who made a nifty sliding play.
Black defended a decision that took an at-bat out of Arenado’s hands. The All-Star third baseman is hitting .309 with 30 homers and 87 RBIs.
“Obviously, we took away Nolan’s at-bat … to get Trevor up there with the bases loaded and Cargo behind him,” Black said. “It didn’t work out for Trevor.”
Kirby Yates pitched the ninth for his fifth save, with Chris Iannetta flying out to deep left to end the game.
Anderson (6-6) had pinpoint accuracy over 6 1/3 innings — 74 of his 99 pitches were strikes — except for two misplaced cutters. Hosmer hit one for a two-run shot in the first inning and Hedges added his 10th homer of the season.
The left-handed Anderson has now surrendered 26 homers, which is tied for the most in the NL.
“Anytime you throw a pitch that goes up the wall, you wish you had it back,” Anderson said.
Iannetta took a foul tip off his right wrist while catching in the top of the fifth, but remained in the game. In the bottom half, he launched a solo homer to tie the game at 3.
Padres: LHP Eric Lauer (left forearm strain) is scheduled to throw about 65 pitches Friday for Triple-A El Paso. It will be his second rehab start since going on the DL on July 31.
Entering Tuesday, slugger Matt Holliday was hitting .347 with three homers in 14 games for Triple-A Albuquerque. He figures to be on the Rockies’ radar with rosters expanding on Sept. 1.
“I want him to come up. I want him here,” Arenado said. “He was one of my favorite players growing up. … I know he can definitely be a help.”
Holliday played the first five seasons of his 14-year career with the Rockies. He hit .290 as a rookie in 2004 and helped lead Colorado to its only World Series appearance in 2007.
Padres RHP Jacob Nix (1-1, 6.75 ERA) will make his third career start and first against the Rockies on Wednesday. Colorado has won eight straight games with RHP Jon Gray (9-7, 4.76 ERA) taking the mound.