Since returning to the starting lineup on Wednesday night after a three-game absence with a sore left knee, first baseman Yonder Alonso has has gone 4-for-6. With his ninth-inning single in Thursday's game against the Astros, Mark Kotsay pushed his pinch-hitting record to 6-for-17 (.353) on the season. He is 47-for-150 (.313) in his career as a pinch-hitter, second among active players. Rockies: CarGo killing it
Outfielder Carlos Gonzalez continues to tear up opposing pitchers and climb the NL rankings in nearly every offensive category. His three hits on Thursday afternoon in Colorado's 11-10 win over the Nationals pushed his average to .339, fifth in the NL, and his two RBIs give him 56, the NL's second-highest total. His 95 hits are third most on the Senior Circuit. The most impressive stat of the 26-year-old's season so far, however, may be total bases. With his three singles Thursday afternoon, Gonzalez solidified his NL-leading total of 170. Rockies manager Jim Tracy gave Michael Cuddyer a day off from the starting lineup Thursday to give the struggling outfielder a day to help him mentally refocus heading into this weekend's series with the Padres. Cuddyer enters the series hitting .256 with 11 homers this season, but was just 4-for-41 (.098) in his last 10 games. Worth noting
Gonzalez was traded to the Rockies by the A's in a November 2008 deal that sent Matt Holliday to Oakland. Among the other players sent to Denver in the deal was current Padres closer Huston Street. When the Padres dropped a 1-0 decision to the Astros on Wednesday night at Minute Maid Park, they did so in just one hour and 58 minutes, their shortest game since a July 1, 2008, loss to the Rockies. Aaron Cook got the shutout in the 4-0 Colorado win in that game. Andrew Cashner carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning in just his second start of the season. Cashner was sent to Double-A San Antonio to lengthen from reliever to starter, and was recalled before Thursday's game. The righty struck out nine in 6 1/3 innings, yielding two runs on two hits. Alexi Amarista's go-ahead grand slam in the ninth inning of Thursday's game was his first career home run, and just the second grand slam of the season of the Padres (Chase Headley, April 8 vs. Dodgers).