Series: Game 2 of 2

Series tied 1-1 (as of 9/4)

Game 1: Tuesday, September 3
Colorado 2Final
San Francisco 4
Game 2: Wednesday, September 4
Colorado 2Final
San Francisco 1

Rockies 2

(63-77, 24-48 away)

Giants 1

(78-60, 39-28 home)

    10:15 PM ET, September 4, 2002

    AT&T Park, San Francisco, California 

    123456789 R H E
    COL 000011000 2 - -
    SF 000100000 1 - -

    W: D. Neagle (8-9)

    L: L. Hernandez (9-15)

    S: J. Jimenez (36)

    Giants fall, but don't lose ground in wild-card race

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Denny Neagle is finding that a simple approach on the mound brings him the most success.

    Denny Neagle

    He's no longer improvising, he's no longer trying to throw too hard, but rather just being aggressive on every pitch -- and that's how the Colorado left-hander beat Barry Bonds and the San Francisco Giants on Wednesday night.

    Neagle, demoted to the bullpen in July, combined with two relievers on a four-hitter as the Rockies defeated the Giants 2-1.

    ''Obviously there were a couple things I needed to do,'' Neagle said. ''One was getting back to being aggressive in the strike zone, throwing all my pitches over the plate.''

    He even threw to Bonds, who went 1-for-4 with a fourth-inning single as Colorado held him in check for the second straight night. Bonds, who hit five home runs in three games last week against the Rockies, flied out twice to left including once in the eighth with a runner on first.

    ''Neagle is throwing a lot different now,'' said San Francisco's Jeff Kent, who managed a single off Neagle in the fourth for his 1,000th career hit as a Giant.

    ''He's throwing more fastballs, throwing hard. Somehow he gained 5 to 6 miles per hour on his fastball over the last month.''

    It's been an emotional summer for Neagle, who vetoed a trade to Detroit in June, then was demoted to the bullpen before rejoining the rotation July 31 when John Thomson was traded.

    ''He's set a great tempo ever since he got out of the bullpen,'' Colorado manager Clint Hurdle said. ''It was a real quality start by Denny.''

    Neagle (8-9) gave up three hits and one run in seven innings. He has allowed just 10 earned runs in his last seven starts, lowering his ERA from 5.92 to 4.68.

    The Rockies won for just the second time in 12 games and broke a five-game losing streak to the Giants. San Francisco swept Colorado in four games last week at Coors Field.

    Larry Walker drove in the go-ahead run in the sixth inning. Juan Pierre reached on a bunt single with one out, stole second and went to third on a groundout. Walker followed with his hit to make it 2-1.

    Todd Helton singled twice and scored and Todd Zeile also had two hits for the Rockies, who played the Giants for the final time this season. San Francisco won 11 of 19.

    Jose Jimenez pitched the ninth for his 36th save in 41 opportunities.

    The Giants, who had won eight of nine, remained 2 games behind the Dodgers in the NL wild-card race after Los Angeles lost 7-1 to NL West-leading Arizona.

    ''We hit some rockets all night but they were playing deep and in good position,'' Giants manager Dusty Baker said. ''You don't like it, but that's how it goes sometimes.''

    Giants starter Livan Hernandez (9-15) retired 11 of the first 12 hitters he faced before allowing a leadoff single to Helton in the fifth.

    After his single, Helton went to third on a single by Zeile. Hernandez then walked Sandy Alomar to load the bases. Brent Butler hit into a double play and Helton scored the tying run.

    Hernandez allowed two runs and six hits with four strikeouts in seven innings. Hernandez was looking for his 10th win of the season, which would have given all five San Francisco starters at least 10 wins.

    Kent scored San Francisco's lone run on a line-out to right by Benito Santiago in the fourth. Walker threw home to Alomar, but the throw was a little off and Kent hopped over Alomar just down the third-base line and touched the plate.

    The Giants drew 34,342 but were outnumbered in attendance on the night the Oakland Athletics won their 20th straight game and made baseball history across San Francisco Bay against the Kansas City Royals.

    Game notes

    Neagle is 4-2 with a 1.93 ERA in his last seven starts. ... Neagle has gone seven or more innings in four of his past six outings after doing that just six times in his first 48 starts with the club. ... Bonds stole his seventh base of the season. ... The Giants turned five double plays, the most since the club also had five Aug. 6, 2000, vs. Pittsburgh.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press