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Second baseman drives in six runs

4/15/2004

DENVER (AP) -- Aaron Miles might have been the least likely
player in the Colorado lineup to hit two home runs and drive in six
runs.

Led by their light-hitting rookie second baseman, the Rockies
beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 14-4 Wednesday night.

Colorado had 15 hits in its third straight win while Arizona
dropped its fifth in a row.

After the game, manager Rockies manager Clint Hurdle announced
that center fielder Preston Wilson will undergo surgery for torn
cartilage in his left knee and be sidelined indefinitely. Wilson,
who led the NL last season with 141 RBI, was placed on the 15-day
disabled list, retroactive to April 13.

Miles, acquired from the Chicago White Sox for Juan Uribe on
Dec. 2, hit a solo homer in the first and a three-run shot in the
fifth. He had an RBI double in the fourth and a run-scoring
groundout in the seventh.

Miles went 3-for-5 and raised his average from .158 to .250.

"Leading off the game with a homer was special, especially
because I haven't exactly been killing the ball," Miles said. "I
had a little bit of a weight lifted off of me. I just tried to hit
the ball and tried to make good solid contact, line drives, and
hard ground balls. In this park when you get under it, something
good happens."

The switch-hitting Miles hit his first homer left-handed and his
second right-handed, a feat he also accomplished once in the
minors.

"Who would have thought Miles was going to hit two home runs,
one from each side of the plate?" Hurdle said.

But Hurdle noted that Miles hit 11 homers at Triple-A Charlotte
last season, and scouts said "he could square a ball up every now
and then. He's shown he's got that ability now. At least it will
draw some awareness throughout the league that he's not just a
Punch-and-Judy hitter up there."

Joe Kennedy (1-0) pitched six solid innings for the Rockies.

Kennedy, who went 3-12 for Tampa Bay last season, threw five
scoreless innings before tiring in the sixth, when he gave up a
two-run homer to Luis Gonzalez. He allowed six hits and two runs.
He struck out four and walked one.

It was Kennedy's first win since last May 13, and it ended his
nine-game losing streak.

"Kennedy gave us a quality start," Hurdle said. "He didn't
have his best stuff, but he stayed out of the middle of the plate
for the most part. And he was able to use all his pitches -- his
slow curveball, his two-seamer, his four-seamer and his changeup.
He was just kind of quietly efficient."

Diamondbacks starter Elmer Dessens (0-1) went 4 2-3 innings,
surrendering 11 hits and nine runs.

Arizona manager Bob Brenly was ejected in the ninth by home
plate umpire Gary Darling for arguing balls and strikes.

"We don't want anybody to get accustomed to finding ways to
lose, which I think we've been doing," Brenly said. "I don't mind
getting beat. You are going to get beat. In a good year you are
going to lose 60 or 70 ballgames. I don't like it when we beat
ourselves, and we've been doing a lot of that and that's going to
change."

Miles and Vinny Castilla homered in the first off Dessens to put
Colorado up 3-0. Miles led off with his first major league homer.
After Todd Helton doubled, Castilla hit a 422-foot homer to left,
his second.

In the fourth, Rene Reyes doubled down the left-field line and
scored on Miles' ground-rule double for a 4-0 lead.

Kennedy breezed through the first three innings, getting a
double-play grounder after having to duck out of the way of Richie
Sexson's lined single to lead off the second.

Sexson and Alex Cintron had back-to-back two-out singles in the
fourth, but Kennedy struck out Shea Hillenbrand.

Colorado chased Dessens with a six-run fifth that included
Miles' three-run homer.

Jeromy Burnitz hit a two-run double and Kennedy had an RBI
single. Miles greeted reliever Stephen Randolph with his homer to
left.

Arizona cut the deficit to 10-2 in the sixth on Gonzalez's
427-foot homer, his third.

Colorado scored four more runs in the seventh off Steve Sparks,
including RBI doubles by Helton and pinch-hitter Mark Sweeney.

Hillenbrand and Danny Bautista hit solo homers in the ninth to
make it 14-4.

Game notes
The Rockies honored the NCAA champion University of Denver
men's hockey team in a pregame ceremony. ... Miles' homer in the
first marked the 21st time a Colorado player led off a game with a
home run. ... Reyes made a running catch at the right-field wall to
rob Matt Kata in the first.